The setting for the Dharma Realm Shurangama Temple is carefully placed amongst the protected vegetation of the Allocasuarina forest and optimises the landscape to blend harmoniously with the interior via the permeability of the walls. The entrance, oriented toward the east, receives the first sun in the morning, and captures the prevailing north easterly breeze which naturally ventilates the temple.
The expressive timber framed structure is derivative of the traditional ‘dou gong’ framing system whereby a series of cantilevered wood brackets on top of the columns support crossbeams which in turn support the roof structure.
Embracing the traditional characteristics of a Tang dynasty style Buddhist temple, modern construction techniques and engineered timber were utilised to create the expressive supporting structure. A three tiered hierarchy of traditional architectural language is expressed via the materiality of: solid clay brick base; timber framed cloister and walls; and glazed terracotta pitched roof.