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Famous architect for national park

Wednesday, 6th April, 2011

ORIGINAL DESIGN: Mungo project manager Michelle Dunn with architect Glenn Murcutt's design partner at Mungo National Park on Sunday. ORIGINAL DESIGN: Mungo project manager Michelle Dunn with architect Glenn Murcutt's design partner at Mungo National Park on Sunday.

Australia's most famous architect, Glenn Murcutt AO, is to design a research centre for Mungo National Park.

Mr Murcutt and his design partner Wendy Lewin visited the park on Sunday to view the site selected for the new interpretive and research centre.

The building has been commissioned by the Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife. 

CEO of the Foundation, Leonie Gale, said it had been involved in the conservation of Mungo since it was established as a national park. 

"Mungo National Park is a crucial part of our planet's geological and evolutionary history. This centre will be a gateway to the World Heritage-listed

Willandra Lakes Region, showcasing its spectacular landscape and its enduring history and culture," Ms Gale said. 

"Once the design is complete we will begin a fundraising campaign for the centre." 

She said the Paakantji, Ngiyampaa, and Mutthi Mutthi Aboriginal people had been consulted, as had local landholders and community groups.

"We are very excited that Glenn Murcutt and Wendy Lewin are on board to design the new centre, which is planned to be sustainable, and sensitive to the environment and Aboriginal values. 

"With the collection of Murcutt's working drawings held in the NSW State Library being its most visited collection, a Murcutt-designed building would be a destination in itself."

National Parks Regional Manager Steve Millington said the centre would allow visitors to learn about the significance of Mungo.

"The plan is for a new centre at Mungo National Park to be a meeting place, a centre for scientific research and a keeping place for Aboriginal cultural items," he said.

"It will house exhibitions and tell the fascinating story of the region's 50,000 years of Aboriginal heritage and the dramatic changes in climate and landscape.

Human remains discovered at Mungo in 1969 give evidence that the Indigenous tribes of Australia constitute the oldest living culture in the world."

The centre would also provide jobs and generate revenue, Mr Millington said.

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