After years of planning by the Bennett Family, Ashgrove's new Dairy Door Visitor Experience Centre has been constructed in the image of the cheesemakers who occupy it - resilient and unwavering.
The new development covers more than 1200sqm, overlooks pastural lands with views to Mother Cummings Peak and is expected to receive up to 650 visitors a day.
At the height of the COVID-19 lock down, Tas City Building toppled Ashgrove's former café and retail area, making way for the contemporary Dairy Door.
After relocating some of Australia's most colourful cows, the new build began on rocky, reclaimed fill - a difficult surface in which to dig footings.
Although the doors were closed, the factory was able to remain in production, servicing an online supply which had been prepared in advance of the build.
The former café and store is a fixture among locals, who continued knocking at the gates in pursuit of fine cheese and coffee.
The original structure was removed while the remaining factory sub-station and motor control centre had to be protected from building activity and spring rain.
In one of many examples of great collaboration between Tas City Building and the team at Ashgrove, temporary waterproofing prevented a disruption to power supply and production could continue.
Design and detail evolved during the process to include various elements from the existing site in order to design a multi-purpose, temperature-controlled complex that offers both a contemporary and historic feel.
Parts of the existing concrete floor slab were retained and extensions added to create a large new footprint with bricks from the Bennet family's original generations-old farm buildings woven into the new brick facade.
Red quartzite was quarried locally by Crezzwells in Deloraine and used in the new alfresco slab.
Visitors can enjoy the interactive interpretation space which includes a new café, alfresco area, retail and viewing windows where cheese production and maturing rooms can be viewed.
To settle the building into the surrounding landscape and connect the levels between the carparks and dairy door, rocks from the farm were sourced and placed by Paul bennet.
Crisp Brothers Engineering brought technological innovation to the project with a tremble 3D laser scanner, designing the steelwork for the new alfresco area and creating the structural connection from the factory to the new dairy door.
The high quality trade skills utilised in this process have created an impressive structure - offering a seamlessly immersive experience for visitors and a result which the people involved in project can be very proud of.