Form Landscape Architects strive to exceed expectations by creating inspirational spaces and places for its people and communities, in order for them to thrive together into the future.
The studio was founded by Principal and Managing Director Matthew Franzmann in 2005 and has grown into a team of over twenty talented and culturally diverse individuals. In these fifteen years our team has delivered a variety of prominent projects not only in Australia but in the Middle East, Asia and the Pacific region. With a diverse project portfolio ranging from large scale master plans to intimate garden courtyards, our experienced team are committed to connecting people and place. Each project is approached with creativity, passion and a collaborative attitude.
Our process can be broken down into three simple steps–Dream, Compose, Experience.
Not only do we dream, we dream big. The name of our studio, Form, is considered as a verb, a process. To form is “to cause something to have a particular shape or form over a period of time–to make something begin to exist”. Every project starts with an idea, and putting pen to paper. Our initial process of forming an idea, pushes the boundaries of a brief in order to achieve a result that exceeds expectations. Concurrently, we endeavour to distil the innate qualities of each site – the way we live, links to our heritage, endemic beauty and the surrounding natural systems. We believe that high quality design is intentional and is achieved through detailed understanding of the historic, natural and built environment of a site.
Once the dream is realised, we compose, and we compose together. The role of the Landscape Architect is often one of coordination. We believe in working side by side with clients and consultant teams to build genuine enduring partnerships, where trust and respect are core ingredients for exceptional compositions. Our team place a strong emphasis on creating vibrant and well-informed spaces that positively respond to the way we experience life and the realities that we face together. Limits need to be explored, tested and redefined to truly innovate. Our use of high-quality graphic presentation and immersive computer technologies assists in the visualisation and analysis of the validity of our concepts through to clear and considered detailed documentation.
The end result is a landscape that can be experienced, and experienced forever. Through our rigorous symbiotic process we create engaging spaces that tell stories and leave lasting impressions. The forms and styles that are ultimately produced, are deliberate and personal to both designer, client and community. Our vision is that even after the resulting physical landscape may be gone due to the confines of time, the memories remain forever. The photographs, the stories, the memories are passed through generations, forming a small part in history that we strive to make a lasting contribution to.
Dream Big, Compose Together, Experience Forever.
Bim’bimba Park is a nature-based playground at the Mirvac estate of Gainsborough Greens. The play space is composed along a linear spine with a progression of challenging play elements. They meander through a forest of reclaimed timber totems, treated by a Japanese charred finish called Shou Sugi Ban. Commencing at one end with toddler play, the journey transitions along the spine through play elements that increase in challenge, culminating in the elevated and bespoke play tower inspired by the form of the Australian bottle tree. The concept acknowledges children want to play together irrespective of their ability, which has led to 90% of the playground providing access for immersive and inclusive play. Defined pockets project out from the spine including a climbing tree, a timber forest with carved sculptures, sound play, and a teen hang, all imbued with a variety of interactive landscape features. We sought to convey a sustainability message, that recycling raw materials can lead to sophisticated design outcomes. Using ameliorated site soils, mulch from cleared vegetation and timber elements from areas necessarily cleared, all reflect this mindset. For additional materials, durability was key. Materials in their rawest form were specified to reinforce this ethos. Metal is galvanised and unpainted, boulders are large and natural, and timber has perfect imperfections. The results show that costly materials are not always necessary to create an engaging play space.
The Yards in Brisbane provides residents with a series of outdoor rooms, pavilions, outdoor gyms, and seating nooks. The space fosters opportunities for large gatherings, or allows those seeking solitude to do so within the lush garden setting. The typical challenge of maximising recreational opportunity in a high density living environment without that sense of intensity was at the forefront of the design vision. A focal point is the resort style pool which required considered coordination to conceal the necessity to have the pool above podium level. The resolved design involved intricate podium folds and steps that form a floating pool coping that presents at seating height to adjoining terraces. Drainage for the podium aimed to conceal drainage outlets and implement a sheet flow strategy across sections of the slab. This strategy directed surface flow into concealed gravel strip drains, avoiding the need for point drainage. The landscape aesthetic was inspired by origami folds, providing a coherent design language throughout. This patterning is realised when viewed by residents from balconies above, presenting an interconnected tapestry of gardens and pathways. Careful planning was given to soil depths to minimise the structural loading pressure points. The final composition presents a pleasant undulating landscape that reinforces the spatial definition of the garden rooms, conceals fence-less private podium courtyards, and accommodates generous tree canopies.
Everleigh is a masterplanned community located in the heart of Greenbank. The entry has been designed to welcome residents’ home while setting the tone for the community. An interpretation of the stunning mountains and natural surrounds that form the backdrop to the development, the sculpture comprises 80 origami-like folded steel pieces – which together make up a curvilinear, flowing statement. This entry piece forms the beginning of the thread of urban elements woven into the fabric of the development. Through sculpture, furniture, signage and landform, these curvilinear forms and urban materials are represented throughout the natural aesthetic of the development. More than 25% of the development will be dedicated to open space including conservation parkland, regional, local and linear parks. The client, Mirvac, keen to create a beating heart for the new community, focused on creating a space for residents to come together in a natural environment. The first stage constructed comprises 1.5 hectares of recreation parkland, including a large inviting event lawn, a play oval and a junior playground, where residents can meet their neighbours and engage with the wider Greenbank community. Hints of the natural world are woven into the design through the use of rocks, planting and materials in their raw form. Representation of this transition can be seen in in use of corten steel and the thoughtful contrast with the rock lined drainage swale and native planting palette.
Ayla Golf is Jordan’s first 18-hole signature grass golf course. It is the lynchpin to a greater master planned community and resort known as Ayla Oasis. The delivery of the golf course represents a milestone in the evolution of Jordan’s sport, tourism and economy as a whole. Working in close collaboration with Greg Norman Golf Course Design, the team was engaged to design and document surrounding landscape works to the course. Ayla Golf consists of an 18-hole course, 9-hole par 3 academy, driving range, clubhouse and comfort stations. The supporting landscape provides a naturalistic desert context. Rugged compositions of plant species reinforce the natural beauty of surrounding desert landscapes. A thread of water elements wind through the course, visually linking to the Gulf of Aqaba, reinforcing the concept of Ayla as an Oasis. Rocky outcrops emerge, drawing reference to surrounding mountain ranges. A sustainable approach informed plant selections that would flourish within a finite irrigation allowance. Water is sourced from subsurface aquifers and is distributed sparingly to sustain plant life. Supporting landscape designs were also provided for architectural elements. Working in close collaboration with Oppenheim Architecture, soft and hard landscape elements were designed to complement elegant, dune-like architectural forms. From comfort stations to academy buildings and a clubhouse, a minimalist desert landscape response was once again employed.
The project is one stage of a major upgrade at Griffith University’s Gold Coast campus. The upgrade sought to increase the efficiency of movement throughout the campus while also creating spaces to study, teach and recreate. The design methodology began by analysing the existing built form and vegetation, with the proposed walkway structures, pavilions, and pathway connections to define the proposed character. The zones moved from highly structured landscape to a semi-natural feel, until ultimately transitioning into surrounding bushland. Microclimatic pockets were identified across the project which were intricate and varied due to the network of built form. The observations differentiated the spaces in terms of sunny and shady, exposed and protected and wet and dry. Drainage and WSUD principles were carefully integrated into the design. Ephemeral drainage channels, roof drainage down pipes into stormwater gardens, and natural infiltration zones, all contributed to slowing stormwater from the site while passively irrigating the landscape. Landscape planting structure was considered in terms of layering, shade planting, screen planting and vertical planting to optimise placement. Habitat creation was considered through native flowering plants, nesting boxes and ephemeral drainage areas. The depth and precision of the design methodology resulted in a series of clear concise overlays that could be applied across the site which informed the landscape design to be implemented.