Mount Stromlo Observatory was established in 1924. It is Australia’s oldest and one of the largest solar observatories. On Saturday 18th January 2003, a raging superheated firestorm destroyed the observatory, eliminating five telescopes, workshops, seven homes and the heritage-listed administration building. Only one telescope escaped the fire: the 1868 Farnham.
In keeping with the original character of this historical building, the architects chose a select grade Messmate for the field of the floor, accompanied by a skilful transition from old to new by the use of re-milled turpentine, sourced from Pyrmont Wharf and dried in the ACT region. These inserts represent the walls of the original building.
This extraordinary project was completed with only the finest workmanship and superior finishes. With keen attention-to-detail, the flooring was installed over a concrete subfloor, following the fitting of a plastic membrane. Kiln-dried battens were pinned to the concrete using galvanised steel spikes, with a structural sheet flooring installed to the battens using Bostik Ultraset and nails.
No exception was made when installing the Messmate flooring, which was secret nailed and fully adhered to the sheet flooring. This floor was finished meticulously using Bona ‘Traffic’ – a non-toxic, non-yellowing, water-based polyurethane.
We have carefully maintained this buildings original character while providing a distinctive difference.