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Canberra Shopping Centre modernised with custom Corian® colour

Its seamless finish and design flexibility were influential in the specification of Corian® for the latest Canberra Shopping Centre redevelopment. Corian® was used to modernise the central concourse of the Ainslie Mall, including the columns and spandrels.

From its beginnings, as ‘Monaro Mall’ in the 1960s, the Canberra Centre has set the benchmark for innovation and style. The concept design for the refurbishment was developed by international design group Universal Design Studio in collaboration Mather Architecture. The sleek finishes and elegant custom designs of Corian® allowed the team to create designs that reflect the well-known characteristics of the shopping centre, while giving the interior an updated vibrant, refreshed look.

The custom colour palette offered by Corian® was a major consideration to Mather Architecture’s choice of material. Challenged with a requirement of matching the colour with a section of exposed concrete in the shopping centre design, the design team worked closely with the DuPont™ colour team in Japan to create a customised Corian® colour that matched the concrete perfectly: DuPont™ Corian® Quarry. This bespoke approach enabled the designers to achieve the original vision they had for the project’s overall colour scheme.

The custom colour was used in two main areas of Canberra Shopping Centre. The shopping centre columns were thermoformed and clad using Corian® Quarry, along with the spandrel panels between floors. The spandrel panels were designed with a truncated triangular pattern with one side of the pattern sand blasted for additional creative effect.

With versatile properties and ability to be produced in wider sheet sizes, the Corian® material allowed the fabrication team to create a solution that would overcome the challenge of forming the large area of the columns. Mather Architecture worked closely with the fabricator, Capital Solid Surface, and the Corian® technical team to modify their process in order to achieve the desired result.

With more than 260 national and international retailer outlets onsite, it was imperative that the centre remained open during this stage of renovation. Using Corian® facilitated the creation of a highly intricate design, that was thin, lightweight and able to be retrofitted to an existing and fully operational building without significant destructive demolition works.

Capital Solid Surface was able to pre-make the columns and spandrels to the exact size in the factory, allowing for a much faster and easier installation process. Being able to create the columns and spandrels offsite allowed larger pieces of the installation to be actioned after hours, ensuring there was minimal disruption to the shopping centre’s customers.

The owner of Canberra Shopping Centre, QIC, was so impressed with the result that they will be upgrading the current Corian® White columns on the lower level food court area with Corian® Quarry, which will enhance the modernisation and overall look and feel of the new shopping centre even further.


Project Details

Design By: MATHER Architecture and Universal Design Studio
Fabrication: Capital Solid Surface
Photography: Ben Wrigley
  • Decorative Cladding
  • Textured Surfaces

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