Cops are Tops, or, Gendarme the whale

While contracting to PTW Architects, Lull Studios designed this funky police station in Coffs Harbour. Although it was the subject of some consternation amongst locals when the scaffolding came down, we’re now informed that the people of this mid-north coastal region are super proud of the fresh and lively persona of the local copshop.

While the colours were sourced and arranged from our own down-res’d, pixellated photographs of the native bushland, the shape took on a decidedly aquatic look. OK, so inside there are the necessary holding cells and rows of workstations, but we managed some cool moments. How low can morale go when you work inside a big colourful stripy whale?

The hard lesson was that years of cost-cutting within the NSW Police Force mean that it no longer has enough resources to provide humane working conditions for those people charged with some of the most difficult jobs in our public services — child protection, anyone? Nowadays, police working conditions are outsourced to bean-counter Facility Managers who have no eye on quality of life, but rather just pursue the old-school single bottom line. The problems are complex but matters could be improved with some political will.


_DSC1630a_DSC6045a _DSC6047a_DSC1434aPhotos courtesy PTW Architects + Adrian Boddy photography



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