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port arthur historic site - tasmania


Port Arthur Historic Site Management Authority


Penitentiary Conservation, Structural Implementation and Interpretation Project


Tasman Peninsula, Tasmania

Project Detail:

The Iconic Penitentiary Building at Port Arthur stands virtually untouched from 1897 when fire destroyed the roof and saw collapse of some walls.  The penitentiary was originally constructed as a granary, flourmill and treadmill between 1842 and 1845. The Granary was converted into a penitentiary from 1852 and was completed and occupied by 1857.

Port Arthur Historic Site Management Authority (PAHSMA) engaged HPA Projects with Hyder Engineers and Technical specialists to undertake a major study on the Penitentiary Ruin with 4 objectives:

  1. Analyse the structural sufficiency of the Ruin with reference to Australian Standards and Masonry codes.  This included Geo Technical Analysis of conditions adjacent the Ruin and of the existing foundation condition.
  2. Formulate and Design a structural solution to the structural deficiencies of the Ruin and the Environmental threats faced by it.
  3. Outline all non structural works and visitor access requirements including archeological investigation, walkways, interpretation and other related works that together with the structural works comprise the project.
  4. Cost the Project and provide commentary on construction methodology.

HPA assembled a team of leading engineers and heritage experts to assist PAHSMA in creating a scheme that is sensitive, cost-effective and buildable. 

The Project Scope and Design Project Director
Michael Pender

Structural Engineer
Richard Barnes, Hyder Consulting

Conservation Engineer
Simon Wiltshier, Mott MacDonald

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