The University of Melbourne engaged WRA to undertake a Concept Study in 2014 to investigate the opportunities for upgrade and expansion of facilities in the existing Theatres Building - B879. This work was commissioned after WRAs’ 2012 Needs Analysis of the School of Art, School of Performing Arts and MusicalTheatre at the Southbank campus.
The Concept Study identified three stages of works to increase effective use of the building, its allowable occupancy and to accommodate additional performing arts programs. The Stage One Upgrade was implemented in 2014, with the Stage Two Upgrade being completed this year.
Stage Two Upgrade included:
- Technical theatre and acoustic upgrades to the main performance and rehearsal spaces
- New Costume Studios
- Meeting spaces and offices
- Foyer and amenities upgrades
- Services upgrades
Following on from the 2015 College Master Plan, WRA are currently documenting a new Science and Technology building for Whitefriars College.
Due for construction in 2017, the new three-level building will bring together the disciplines of Science and Technology in a new facility.
The building incorporates Science Labs, Materials Technology spaces and introduces Food Technology to the College for the first time. A 200 seat lecture theatre and new functions space is included.
New learning spaces open to each other and create potential for different ways of teaching learning.
Stage 1 of the City of Stonnington’s office consolidation project is now open. Situated within the new Stonnington Civic Precinct, directly opposite the Malvern Town Hall, this project sees the major redevelopment of an existing 1980s three-storey office building to accommodate 250 of Councils staff team.
Extensive consultation with more than 25 staff departments defined the user brief, and helped engage support and promote organisational change, resulting in change to their work environment.
The innovative design now provides Council with open plan working spaces across three levels, together with a new publicly addressed custom service foyer, comfortable staff break out areas, and various formal and informal meeting zones.
A new central glass atrium void leading from the Foyer, extends above roof level and breaks open the deep building floor plate. Together with a living, breathing green wall traversing all floors, the void provides occupants with abundant natural daylight, as well as visual relief and improved air quality.
Each of the three floor levels has a distinct colour palette and styling theme to reflect the environment and its occupants. A cool blue and crisp white palette on the ground floor maximises connection with the blue glass atrium and lightens the darkest floor level. A fresh, vibrant yellow, together with black and cool greys on the mid-level reflects the young, urban vibe of the various departments occupying that level. The Councillors on the top level see the green wall in its entirety, and thus this level takes on warm green tones and light timbers for a mature and comfortable feel.
The recently completed St Catherine's Student Centre at Siena College brings together a range of student resources into a new 3-storey facility.
Designed around the 3-storey main circulation stair, the building aligns the foyers and open learning spaces on each level with views back into the heart of the campus, and into the tree canopy on Hocknell Road. Facilities include a new Student Reception and Administration, 200-retractable seat Multi-Function Centre, new learning spaces, Year 12 social and study spaces and refurbished Resource Centre and Art / Textiles spaces with new Gallery.
The new Visual and Performing Arts Centre involved a full refurbishment of the iconic modernist building, originally designed by nenowned Melbourne architect Frederick Romberg (of Grounds Romberg and Boyd).
Over the past 60 years the building underwent numerous renovations including enclosing the central courtyard. Many original features were covered over.
This project provided the opportunity to reinstate and restore elements of the original modernist style, while creating a new and vibrant performing and visual arts centre. The project included reinstating the original foyer and hall spaces; a new flexible square format performance space for dance and drama; multipurpose undercroft space opening up to the courtyard as a student space and doubling as a green room; music tuition spaces; large arts studios and staff spaces.
Photography: John Gollings
The Sister Una McAllister Centre serves the College community both as the Chapel and recital centre, and as a place for the practice and performance of music. The building’s lightweight steel structure perches on a steep embankment with views out across the landscape to Diamond Creek. Exposed aggregate concrete block grounds the building, with the upper floor kept light with glass and aluminium cladding. Timber lining boards provide warmth to the enveloping entry and foyer.
The building comprises the multi-purpose foyer / function room, double height chapel and recital space, with sculptures by Pauline Clayton and glass installations by Janusz and Magda Kuzbicki, Sacristy, two music classrooms, six music tutorial rooms, staff room and landscaping by Rush Wright.
Refurbishment of the existing Food Technology and Science areas created lighter, brighter learning spaces. New technology increased capacity to deliver a wider range of activities.
The new colour scheme was designed to brighten the spaces and create a more engaging atmosphere for students. The Food Technology facility upgrade included the existing Food Technology learning space, addition of a demonstration bench to the Food Technology Theory room and creating a more open, central Prep Space at the entry. The Science facility upgrade included the refurbishment of 2 existing labs with new acoustic ceilings and lighting, and access to outdoor spaces.
Photography: Peter Hyatt
Educational facility master planning is one of our core services, and we are currently completing the following:
Merici College, Canberra
Arts Academy, Federation University Australia, Ballarat
And have recently completed master plans for:
Catholic Ladies College, Eltham, 2001, 2004, 2014
Waverley Christian College, Narre Warren & Wantirna Sth campuses, 2014
St. James College, Wast Bentleigh, 2013
St John's Regional College, Dandenong, 2012
Siena College, Camberwell, 2012
Our Lady of the Sacred Heart College, Bentleigh, 2012
Sacred Heart College, Oakleigh, 2008
Salesian College, Chadstone, 2007
Marymede Catholic College, South Morang