Flinders University’s newest buildings featured prominently in South Australian Architecture Awards presented by the Australian Institute of Architecture.
The Jack McConnell Award for Public Architecture went to Hassell Ltd for its design of the Health Sciences Building, while the new Education Building earned a Commendation in Interior Architecture.
The award citations read:
JACK McCONNELL AWARD FOR PUBLIC ARCHITECTURE
Flinders University Health Sciences Building by Hassell Ltd
The Flinders University Health Sciences building is an elegant addition to the Flinders campus. Its overall proportion is in immediate urban context, and its contemporary iteration of the existing campus architectural language is very successful and inspiring. The result is a visual impact beyond its immediate boundaries to enrich the wider visual and aesthetic environment.
The T-form planning has resulted in a controlled, legible and efficient use of space and circulation, which responds to both the social and functional nature of the brief and clients. There is excellent use of natural light, controlled transparency, views and vista, both internally and externally.
Much care has been taken with the external massing of the major elements of the building, rhythms of construction and detail palette of materials – all of which reinforce the strong initial concept.
The jury was impressed by the consistency and completeness of all aspects of the design resolution, and its positive contribution to the campus skyline.
INTERIOR ARCHITECTURE – Commendation
Flinders University, Education, Humanities & Law Building by Hassell Ltd
An otherwise problematic, sloping site has been captured and used to advantage by the designers who have achieved a series of thoughtfully crafted interior spaces.
From the circulation spaces to the grandeur of the main lecture theater and the more intimate teaching spaces, the designers have approached the interior in a controlled, inviting and thoughtful manner.
Axial views and natural light are skillfully captured throughout the building, emphasising the surrounding university environs, the greater metropolitan and coastal outlooks.
Public circulation spaces, predominately the central void, are inviting, well resolved and well considered spaces. A highlight is the publicly accessible meeting / refreshment room which is dynamically balanced at the top of the main void and acts as a strong visual reference, visible from multiple vantage points within the interior.
Although some interior elements appear to be incomplete, the vast majority of spaces are a unified, legible and well executed.
Ultimately this project delivers high levels of accommodation for staff, students and the public alike – showcasing the university as an inclusive, open and democratic environment for learning.
Photographer: Trevor Mein