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Welcome to ABP e-news, a monthly e-newsletter for alumni, supporters and friends of the Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning (ABP) at the University of Melbourne.

ABP e-news will give you an insight into what's going on in the Faculty, with a round-up of news and events. We will profile innovative people and projects and many of these stories will not be featured anywhere else.

We hope you enjoy this launch edition of ABP e-news.  And do contact us if you have a relevant project, achievement or event we can profile to the ABP community and all those passionate about design and the world we live in.


Our project to create a landmark new education centre focused on the built environment is gathering momentum.

Building enabling works commenced in August and ABP staff are relocating into temporary premises on campus, refurbished by Six Degrees Architects. During the two-year construction phase, 757 Swanston Street will become our Faculty hub and 33 Lincoln Square will be our research hub.

Hoarding will be erected around our new building site in late October and works will escalate in November to prepare for the demolition and construction phases. Viewing holes in the hoarding and an elevated platform will provide students, stakeholders and the public insight into the project's progress. Cameras positioned around the site will also provide images and video footage of the build, which will be uploaded on to the ABP website.

The construction phase offers students and staff a unique opportunity to observe and access a large-scale building project. There are a several research projects and studios already underway exploring aspects of the design and construction process and we will profile these in future editions of ABP e-news.

For regular updates on the new building project, visit the ABP website.


Professor Alan Pert, Director of NORD (Northern Office for Research and Design) joins ABP as the new Director of the Melbourne School of Design this month. Alan is a teacher, researcher and practitioner, with an exceptional profile in the UK architecture scene. Most recently, he held the position of Professor of Architecture and Director of Research for Architecture at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow. Pert's academic and industry expertise will help to establish the MSD as a centre of excellence and innovation in built environment education.


How does a multidisciplinary approach enhance the built process? Federation Square is an example of the value of collaboration in the creation of a landmark site. Donald Bates, ABP's new Chair of Architectural Design and Director of LAB Architecture Studios and Patrick Bellew, Principal of Artelier Ten and a leading environmental engineer formed part of the creative team behind Federation Square. Ahead of its time, Bates and Bellew approached the project from an environmentally sustainable design perspective and the resulting space is still an exemplar of sustainability and innovation. We spoke to Donald Bates on the occasion of Federation Square's 10th anniversary. Read more.


MSD students, led by VEIL's Chris Ryan, engaged in a interdisciplinary travelling studio in Florence in September. Using VEIL's unique 'Eco Acupuncture' concept, the group explored environmental and design questions such as: 'What would a sustainable Florence look like in 2035?' and 'What steps can be taken today to achieve sustainability? Read more.


Lucinda Hartley, a 2004 graduate of Landscape Architecture and winner of the AILA Jim Sinatra Leadership Award, has an exceptional commitment to community development. Lucinda, together with fellow University of Melbourne graduate, Leeanne Marshall, is currently working on a youth mental health facility in Frankston. The centre is being designed in collaboration with the service providers and the young people who will use the facility. Read about it here.


With the recent appointment of Shelley Penn as the National President of the Australian Institute of Architects and the launch of Parlour, a new website for women in architecture, we thought it timely to focus an edition of Atrium on women working in the built environment. Two alumni shared with us their distinct career choices and highlights: Katelin Butler, editor of Houses magazine and Pascale Gomes-McNabb, an architect, interior designer and resturanteur. Read the full article in Atrium.


Book Launch: 19 October, Baldwin Spencer Building

At a time when women's safety in public spaces is forefront in the media, a new book has been published exploring this critical issue. Associate Professor Carolyn Whitzman is the lead editor of Building Inclusive Cities examining modern cities and women's safety. The publication, featuring essays by international experts in the field, adds to the research and dialogue on how effective urban planning and management can make cities healthier, safer and more liveable for all. The book will be launched on 19 October at 6pm in the MSD Student Lounge, Baldwin Spencer building. Read more.


Public Lecture & Symposium: 19 - 20 October
This two-day event brings together critics, scholars and colleagues of John Andrews, an international star of late Modernism and one of Australia's most significant architects. The symposium on 20 October is a rare opportunitiy to hear John Andrews' speak about his career and projects. To launch the event, Mary Lou Lobsinger of the University of Toronto, will present a FREE public lecture on 19 October, highlighting Andrews' Canadian projects. Read more and register online.


Alumni Retrospective Exhibition
19 October - 23 November, Wunderlich Gallery

The ABP Alumni Retrospective Series highlights the exceptional contribution our alumni have made to our design culture and built environment. Since the practice formed in 1991, Six Degrees has become an iconic part of Melbourne's architectural landscape, and are responsible, in part, for activating the city's now famous laneway bar culture. Find out about Six Degrees Greatest Hits.


Free Fold Furniture by Toby Horrocks, MSD Class of 1999
Freefold Furniture is furniture made from cardboard with a focus on sustainability. Toby Horrocks conceived of the idea when he was faced with furnishing an empty rental apartment. His designs, fashioned from cardboard, are affordable and mobile, as well as functional and stylish. Toby's architectural background and business acumen have transformed him into a design entrepeneur with two companies - Toby also directs 'Toby Horrocks Architecture' - in his portfolio at the age of 39. Check out freefoldfurniture.

Toby muses over his design



Shelley Penn, National President AIA and Honorary Associate Professor ABP
Shelley's favourite building has long been Heide II by McGlashan Everist.

"It's the house itself but also the landscape it sits within and how the two relate."

On a larger scale, Shelley's favourite urban space is Canberra "because of the way it has been designed within and as a response to its landscape, and because that landscape is still dominant and woven through the city."

Shelley graduated from the University of Melbourne with a Bachelor of Architecture in 1988. In May this year she was appointed the 73rd National Pesident of the Australian Institute of Architects. She is Director of Shelley Penn Architects.