Memory and Movement in Freemans Bay: An Adaptive Reuse of the Rob Roy Hotel
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In the face of an increasing drive to recognise built heritage significance, yet a tendency to curtail the scope of this recognition in building redevelopments, what strategies are capable of dealing with memory, recollection, and recovery? This project aims to establish a cohesive adaptive reuse strategy that addresses shortcomings in heritage recognition. Focusing on the Rob Roy Hotel, and its immediate environs, this design research tests processes of historical excavation and re-inscription with the aim of devising more meaningful redevelopment of heritage artefacts. Drawing on the site’s social, architectural and geographical histories and the layering of these histories onto a single platform, a unique way of viewing memories and place relations is established. At stake, it will be shown, is a certain imbrication of memory and movement. Considered together, this project seeks a new design language, one that loops the past and future of the Rob Roy Hotel together in ways un-envisaged by the series of redevelopments that have taken hold of both the Bay and the hotel. Key to the design proposal that is developed is what I have chosen to think of as an urban interior, one that takes its inner plenum to be time itself and within which a search for clues is undertaken to furnish and refurbish the new.