University of Melbourne Student Precinct Competition


We were part of a team led by John Wardle Architects that submitted a proposal for the redevelopment of the University of Melbourne Student Precinct.

“A sustainability proposition:

Transform the site from a consumer to a producer. We have reached a point in history in which self sufficiency of precincts can be achieved through financially viable initiatives.  This approach is at the core of our sustainability design philosophy. We are seeking maximum performance as opposed to minimum compliance, with the goal of creating the best outcome for the client in the short and long term. Our design approach minimise operational experience and maximize the user experience. Truly sustainable outcome, not just smoke and mirrors.  The key to all of this is a strong connection between the built form and the students that occupy the space. Open the door for the knowledge from the university to be applied.  As such the design and the engagement require simultaneous enthusiasm, inspiration, optimism and pragmatism. 




Principles of Sustainable Design (based on student engagement):

1) Diverse student connection with sustainability

2) Aspire to zero waste operations

3) Empower students to innovate

4) Net positive energy

5) Healthy, fair and sustainable food

6) Biodiversity and indigenous planting

7) Long lasting structures / adaptability

8) Low impact materials 

9) Water neutrality

10) Low impact transport

The University of Melbourne has ambitious targets for sustainability, such as carbon neutrality by 2030,  12% water reduction by 2020, 33% reduction in waste by 2020. These targets are not necessarily easy to achieve. Our design solution is to transform the student precinct from a  consumer to a producer to help assist the rest of the university meet it’s targets. Asu such we propose not only to see the universities targets, but the exceed them via financially viable initiatives. 

The living laboratory will be instrumental in testing innovation and new technology, connecting the students and involving them is various design solutions.  Not only is the living laboratory an opportunity to test and innovate for the university but to connect with City of Melbourne turning ideas into reality.”

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