Cabramatta Bowls Club Canopy
Location: Cabramatta, NSW
Completion Date: November 2011
Size: 2300 sqm
Fabric: PTFE - St Gobain Sheerfill V
Client: Cabramatta Bowling Club
MakMax Australia has been designing and constructing world-class Bowling Green Canopies for over a decade. One of MakMax’s earliest bowling green canopy project, Cabramatta Bowls Club was also the first lawn bowls facility in Australia to cover a bowling green with architectural-grade PTFE fabric membrane.
Established in 1951, Cabramatta Bowls Club has been an integral part of the local community for over 70 years and is home to several world champions.
The Sydney-based club, like many other lawn bowls clubs, was faced with the challenges of dwindling membership. The club’s inability to host night events meant a high reliance on games only being played during the day. However, playing on the outdoor grass bowling green meant bowlers were impacted by weather conditions, bowling in the hot sun and games being cancelled due to rain. A further challenge for the club was the high cost of maintaining the quality and condition of the grass playing surface.
Cabra Bowls approached MakMax Australia to design and construct a full-cover tensile membrane roof. Whilst bowling green canopies are more common now, this was a new concept at the time and led to the creation of a state-of-the-art undercover lawn bowls facility. The new roofing structure with integrated lighting provided a complete shade and weather solution over a single bowls green, meaning bowlers can play all year round – rain, hail or shine, day or night!
The MakMax team of engineers, along with the national association for lawn bowls, devised a green cover package that alleviated many of the core problems facing the sport of lawn bowls at a club level.
MakMax Australia designed a 2300 sqm tensile membrane roof over one of the three bowling greens at Cabramatta Bowls Club. Tensile membrane structures are ideal for large-span roofing with minimum supporting columns, making it the perfectly solution to cover the bowling green. Made from architectural-grade PTFE fabric membrane tensioned over a steel frame, the canopy acts as a protective barrier against the sun, wind and rain. The tri-chord truss design allowed for lights to be mounted and projected onto the underside of the membrane roof.
By combining the tensile membrane roofing with synthetic greens and lights for night play, we created a multi use facility that would increase the use of the space and guarantee play all year long.
This project was the first lawn bowls roof in Australia to be made from PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene), a coated fibreglass membrane.
MakMax had used PTFE to construct several large-scale stadium roofing projects around the world, however the application of PTFE for lawn bowls roofing was a new concept at the time.
The bowling green canopy is created with St Gobain Sheerfill V, a high-quality PTFE fabric. The white PTFE membrane was chosen for its exceptional strength, durability and ability to span significant distances with minimal secondary supporting elements, making it the material of choice to cover the bowling green at Cabramatta Bowls Club. PTFE is a highly-translucent fabric membrane that can transmit up to 14% of natural light, reducing the need for artificial lighting throughout the day and creating a natural colour-correct and glare-free environment under the canopy. As well as optimising natural lighting, PTFE fabric is waterproof and very good resistance to harmful UV rays, providing full-weather coverage throughout the whole year.
The club was ecstatic with the result and has since implemented a new training programme, using the new green facilities as a platform for guaranteed sessions and revenue.
Cabramatta Bowls Club is a state-of-the-art lawn bowls facility that is home to some of the world’s top bowlers. The club’s ability to offer a variety of playing environments (an undercover synthetic bowling green and two outdoor grass greens) means the pro’s at Cabramatta will be even more skilled on any surface.
MakMax has received awards for this project:
Outstanding Achievement STA Australian Textile Industry Awards 2012
Freestanding Structures greater than 500sqm
IFAI Special Commendation 2012
Tension Structure greater than 500sqm