The Harry Butler Research Centre

  • WA Museum external, Perth project management, APP project management
  • WA Museum internal quarantine lab, APP Perth Project Management

Project details: 

The Western Australian Museum’s Collections and Research Centre (CRC) is where up to 90% of the State's collection of geological, archaeological, natural history and social and cultural history objects and specimens are stored and researched.  As part of the New Museum Project, capital works to expand the collection management and research facilities of the CRC were required. 

APP was initially engaged to prepare a project brief for the CRC upgrade and this role was later extended to include the design management and delivery of the project.  Noting the strict budget allowance, we engaged with key Stakeholders and external Consultants to appropriately define the scope of the project. With the brief in place and approved, we managed the development of design documentation and procurement documentation, in close consultation with all project stakeholders. 

As with all live sites, the construction phase presented a number of significant challenges to avoid any disruption to business as usual.  Given the nature of work undertaken at the CRC, stringent controls were imposed to  minimize dust and vibration and to secure the complex approvals process certification required for laboratories and dangerous goods operational requirements.  In response, APP liaised closely with all stakeholders to ensure that the completed project met all the specific operational requirements while maintaining transparency and visibility of project risks.  

At the official opening of the new building, its name, The Harry Butler Research Centre, was unveiled.  This honours the memory of former staff member and long-time associate of the Museum, the legendary conservationist Dr Harry Butler.


"From the makeshift, retro-fitted facilities that my staff previously had to work in, the move to a fully compliant, fit for purpose, shiny new facility was beyond their wildest dreams."

"...I have also been amazed at the psychological impact that this building has had on my people and on their work practices – I had not really anticipated such a happy, positive, proactive  workforce at the end of build, but it is one of the wonderful outcomes of this project. I would like to sincerely thank you and your team in helping the WA Museum to achieve the first stage of our New Museum Project with such a fantastic building..."

Di Jones, Executive Director, Perth Museums and Collections

Project summary: 

  • Client: Department of Finance, Building Management & Works
  • Value: $17.6m
  • Services: Project Management
  • Sector:  Arts & Cultural
  • Location: Welshpool, WA