Xavier College Master Plan Stage 1 – Central Precinct | MGS Architects

The redevelopment of Xavier Colleges Central Precinct, consisting of the new Kostka Building for years 7 and 8 and a new subterranean Sports and Transport Hub, has transformed the car dominated heart of Xaviers hilltop campus into a safe, sustainable and accessible learning precinct that celebrates learning and diversity.

Representing the first stage of the Colleges Master Plan, the project connects the expansive campus from east to west, threading a new, lively pedestrian walk through the new building. Safe arrival is supported in a subterranean travel hub sleeved with new sports facilities, gently embedded in the landscape in a design response that celebrates the sensitive existing heritage of the site.

The Nursery on Brunswick | Clare Cousins Architects

Previously home to the Fitzroy Nursery for over 40 years, locals have come to know and love this place as a verdant and open–air respite within the tough urban fabric of the high street. The Nursery on Brunswick is a mixed–used building with retail, commercial and residential tenancies that all benefit from the red brick, north facing atrium–like garden at the centre of site.

Countering more typical yield–focused developments in the area, the atrium prioritises quality of amenity over maximum density, providing light, greenery, garden views and amenity to both tenants and the public realm.

Melbourne Indigenous Transition School Boarding House | McIldowie Partners

Built on Wurundjeri land, the new flagship boarding facility at 371 Church St, houses 40 students from remote areas across Victoria and the Northern Territory. Featuring a mix of dormitories, study areas & a collection of gathering spaces, it serves as the physical and spiritual home for the MITS community. Outdoor gathering spaces, including a rooftop terrace with spectacular city views, seamlessly link inside and out and connect students to Country, with native gardens designed to reflect the pre–colonial landscape of the area and a colourful poured paving artwork by Trawlwoolway artist Edwina Green.

The facade, designed in collaboration with Indigenous artist Lorraine Kabbindi White, acts as a billboard for MITS, featuring a laser–cut perforated screen telling the Dreamtime story of the ‘First Bees.’ This story wraps the façade and acts as a landmark “always was, always will be” statement for the Melbourne Indigenous Transition School and the broader community.

Hawthorn I | Agius Scorpo Architects

Hawthorn I is an exercise in backyard optimisation. An assortment of familiar domestic elements both constructed and grown are merged into a cohesive and practical assembly. By re–imagining studio, utility shed and swimming pool as back fence, the resulting enveloped garden takes precedent over an arrangement of individual forms. One continuous element mediates the practicalities of entry and exit, work and play and connection and retreat. A singular ribbon provides a consistent backdrop for the garden whilst offering security, utility and generosity by means of a North facing loft that filters light deep into the footprint of the studio.

Dennis House | Olaver Architecture

Dennis House is a courtyard house which is robust for its layers in planning, section, structural resolution and material choices. Every element of Dennis house is considered for its contribution to the whole and there is a richness in the resultant simplicity which is deeper than the sum of its parts. The CLT and recycled brick structure is both cost effective and sustainable, with richness in texture and a calming interior. Dennis House supports family life and fosters a sense of togetherness extending to the gardens and neighborhood beyond. The careful balance of simplicity, sustainability, and functionality sets Dennis House apart as a home that enriches the lives of its inhabitants.

Dandenong High School Design and Technology Hub | Kerstin Thompson Architects

Dandenong High School Design and Technology Hub is a final piece of the campus puzzle, the project takes an existing redundant aging gym and performing arts centre located against along the edge of the school and adaptively reuses the structural frame into a new two–level hub for design and technology studies.

The school envisaged the building as a space that would provide the students with a ‘real–world’ working environment where they could independently investigate the many streams of design and technology in the resolution of their projects. The key to creating these collaborative spaces is the establishment of a spine that links all the teaching spaces –encouraging the mixing of ideas and techniques. The pockets created along the spine blur the line between the more formal spaces and the informal ones, where ideas can be developed in small groups in a way more akin to a studio than a classroom.

Courtyard House | Clare Cousins Architects

Careful to consider its sensitive heritage context, Courtyard House reinterprets the previous condemned 1885 corner–store’s scale, materiality, and modest street presence. The building is directly informed by the site’s history, the shiplap cladding and galvanised roof establishing a contemporary expression of the past.

Unusually located at the centre of the street frontage, the southern courtyard enables a more dynamic interface between private outdoor space and the public realm.

Courtyard House is shaped from within, dissecting the traditional gable form for a home that is private yet open, contemporary yet figurative, modest but generous.

Bob’s Bungalow | Blair Smith Architecture

This addition to a 1930 Californian bungalow in Strathmore, Melbourne, is a response to countless conversations with two romantics in semi–retirement, accompanied by their rescue dogs, Archie, Buzz – and at one time the project’s namesake, the dearly departed Bob.
Project meetings typically involved sharing food, so this was conducive to extended, wide ranging discussions on subject other than architecture like; film, the veggie garden, collected artefacts, camping trips and the decades already lived within the house. These discussions and the idiosyncrasies of both individuals have now, somehow through osmosis, manifested into a space that evokes their personalities. As a space that compliments an authentically full life and decades of collected treasures, Bob’s Bungalow is unashamedly pastiche–like… a physical translation of an on–going collaboration and friendship.

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