There are several categories of "shade" structures which typically are constructed from knitted shadecloth in varying degrees of shade factor.

Shade structures for sun / hail and wind protection of large nurseries have been common in Australia since the mid 1980s.

Similar shade structures utilizing seat belt webbing as edge cables have been applied to protect cars from sun and hail in Australia, USA, South Africa and other regions.

Since the increased awareness of UV related issues, there has been many shade panels installed in playgrounds and schools. 

There is a larger number of contractors operating in the supply of domestic and small scale shadecloth structures and the pricing competition on these systems has often lead to unsafe cost cutting measures being taken. In many cases structures have been built without certification by a competent structural engineer. There has been many cases where footings and cantilevered columns are totally inadequate for the horizontal loads generated. 

Another issue is the large deflections of these structures under hail loads and wind. Often there is very small amounts of fabric prestress.

Generally made from separate panels of knitted shadecloth to provide a degree of shade and hail protection.

Shadecloth 1
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Shadecloth 2
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Shadecloth 3
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Shadecloth 4
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This project was entered in the 2013 LSAA Design Awards (Small Structures) by Fabritecture

Cockburn Town Square

  • Location:                       Cockburn Town Centre
  • Client:                           Phase 3 Landscapes
  • Completion Date:           February 2013

Fabritecture delivered the design and installation of a customized fabric structure that echoed the vibrant community tapestry of Cockburn in Western Australia.

In line with the project brief, Fabritecture utilised the design inspiration of a multi faceted community and its lifestyle needs.

The finished fabric structure provides an iconic and unique landmark - a welcome addition to the tapestry of community life.

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This project was entered into the LSAA 2016 Design Awards

Shade And Membrane Structures Australia (Design / Project Management / Install)

Location: Sea World.   Completed: December 1, 2013

Client: Village Roadshow Theme Parks

Team:  Osborn Lane / Global Membrane Design and Alliance Design Group, Astute, Shadecom

No further details have been entered for this project.


LSAA 2018 Design Award Entry

Architectural shade canopy over a skatepark


Livingstone Shire Council were looking for a unique solution to traditional hypar shade structures when planning for the skatepark redevelopment at Yeppoon Lagoon. The shade structure was designed to become a focal point of the skate park. It’s a shade structure, but it’s also a colourful, fun, artistic addition to the outdoor sport facility.

The skatepark construction was part of Stage 5 of the Yeppoon Lagoon redevelopment, which also includes a beach amphitheatre, road/pedestrian network upgrades, a kiosk, water play area, wave pool, mini golf course, multi-level car park and a car wash.

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This project was entered in the LSAA 2016 Design Awards

Entrant: Fabritecture (Designer and Installer)

Location: Armadale, WA.   Completed: July 30 2014

Client: McCorkell Constructions

Team: Donovan Payne Architects, Greenup Design International, Fabritecture, Fabric Solutions Australia

No further details have been entered for this project.

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This Project was entered in the LSAA 2013 Design Awards

Essentially the purpose of the project was about cost effective space creation.

The tensioned awning is positioned over a deck area on the first floor at the Nambour children’s hospital.  The Hospital is located on the side of a steep incline, the deck is located in an elevated position.

The awning-covered deck now allows children recovering from surgery or illness to play outdoors on the deck in supervised shaded conditions.  Previously children were confined to an internal hospital playroom.

Award of Excellence: LSAA 2018 Design Awards Shadecloth Category


A series of bespoke architectural shade structures


Our scope of the Scarborough Foreshore project included the design & construction of three steel-framed arbour structures that were to be installed as part of a regional redevelopment of Scarborough.

The structures are comprised of 31 architectural ‘tree-like’ stands that support the mesh & realise the architectural vision of the structures. They are placed along the South beachfront, North beachfront, and Intergenerational Plaza of Scarborough