History and Interpretation Centre Construction and Site Closure

26 May 2021

We are excited to announce that the Cascades Female Factory has appointed builders Hansen Yuncken to construct the new History and Interpretation Centre.

The Cascades Female Factory will close to the public for construction on 26 May 2021 with a view of reopening in December later this year. We apologise for any inconvenience caused by the construction and thank you for your understanding and continued support of our World Heritage-listed site. 


An Architectural Design Competition was launched in March 2017 that called for a design that would celebrate the significance and heritage values of the World-Heritage listed Cascades Female Factory and acknowledge the contribution of convict women throughout the history of colonial Australia and up to the present day.

The competition jury comprised female leaders in architecture, heritage management, and the arts including Catherine Baudet (Director Ferrier Baudet Architects); Janet Carding (Director Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery); Justine Clark (architectural editor, speaker and research); Shelley Penn (Director Shelley Penn Architect); and Penelope Evatt Seidler AM (Director Harry Seidler and Associates).

A Tasmanian architecture firm, Liminal Studio, in partnership with international firm Snøhetta and Melbourne landscape practice Rush Wright Associates, were announced as the design winners in March 2018.

Grant O’Brien, Chair of the Port Arthur Historic Site Management Authority says:

“The new History and Interpretation Centre is an exciting project that will invigorate this globally significant heritage site. Tasmanian firm Liminal Studio, in partnership with Snøhetta International and Rush Wright Associates, have presented a design that will emotionally connect visitors to the existing heritage fabric of the site and sensitively convey the stories of the thousands of women who passed through it.”


photograph of the winning design of the Cascades Female Factory History and Interpretation Centre Design Competition

Winning design by Liminal Architecture Snohetta and Rush Wright Associates. IMAGE: Brick Visuals