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Last week our new building was awarded a 6 Green Star Design - Education Design v1 Rating by the Green Building Council of Australia.

The 6 Star Rating represents 'World Leadership' in environmentally sustainable building practices.  Only 12 buildings in Australia have received a 6 Star Green Star Education Design – v1 rating, and our landmark new building is the largest to achieve this. Significantly, our building is the only one to ever be awarded all 10 innovation points possible in the evaluation criteria. This is a testament to the quality of the design and construction and we are also proud that this is the University of Melbourne's first 6 Green Star rated building, an exemplar of sustainable architectural design on campus.


Donald Bates, Hamish Lyon and Andrew MacKenzie have been announced as the Creative Directors for the 2015 Australian Institute of Architects National Architecture Conference.

The directors will explore the changing role of risk in architecture, focusing on four aspects of risk in the profession; risks related to cultural relevance, architectural pedagogy, professional practice and the discipline of architecture.

Professor Donald Bates is Director of LAB Architecture Studio and Chair of Architectural Design at the University of Melbourne.

Hamish Lyon is Director of NH Architecture and a Studio Leader in the MSD Architecture Masters.

Andrew MacKenzie is a publisher with URO Media and an Architectural Competitions Manager with CityLab.


Researchers from the University of Melbourne and the University of Queensland are investigating equity and diversity in architecture as part of an Australian Research Council funded project. The group are responsible for the Parlour website, the public face of the project and a venue for significant advocacy and engagement.

Last month at the Australian Institute of Architect's National Conference, the team launched the Parlour Guides to Equitable Practice, a suite of 11 guides for employers, employeers and industry bodies that provide a toolkit for addressing inequity in the workplace.

Read more             View the guides



World Architects eMagazine has named Melbourne School of Design's Bower Studio as one of the top ten design / build programs making a difference internationally.

The magazine highlights ten programs from across the globe which are making a difference; by developing experience and skills in future architects, by contributing to local communities throught their efforts, and by exploring the integral relationship between architectural design and building construction.

The Bower Studio, led by Dr David O'Brien, sees students working alongside Indigenous community members to conceive of, design and build necessary local structures.

David explained, “The studio introduces students to real world issues of inequality, race, poverty and marginalisation. We see students emerging as leaders in the disciplinary field with a strong philosophical and ethical basis for influencing future initiatives."

The latest studio saw David and the team working with the Titjikala community, NT to design outdoor housing.


Greetings from Professor Philip Goad in Venice

The Australian Pavilion was officially opened yesterday at the 14th International Architecture Biennale in Venice by The Australian Ambassador to Italy, His Excellency, the Hon. Mike Rann.

Together with another of the Pavilion’s Creative Directors, Rene van Meuuwen, I stood in front of the brilliant orange 'Cloud' structure to address more than 150 excited Australians. The crowd comprised valued ABP colleagues, as well as numerous faculty alumni, including John Denton of DCM, architect of the new Australian Pavilion currently under construction in Venice just across the canal from our temporary ‘Cloud’.

Beneath the 'Cloud' are 23 steel podiums which support trigger images for the exhibit, 'Augmented Australia'. Scores of people used their smart phones and tablets to activate the images of unbuilt Australian architecture that celebrate one hundred years of modernism.

The specially designed App, 'Augmented Australia' is proving very successful. Visitors can access fly-throughs, 3D models and interviews with architects and critics, as well as full-scale geo-positioned models of the 23 featured projects that are located all over Venice.

Projects like the Griffins' ziggurat-shaped unbuilt 'Capitol' in Canberra and Mulloway Studio's (Un)common earth, a scheme for a World War II memorial also in Canberra come to life through the exhibition. They show Australian architecture as it might have been and in a new and innovative medium, Augmented Reality. The exhibit also features 3D printed models of each project that appear as tiny golden tourist mementoes that one might take home from La Serenissima, Venice, home of the city's famous symbol, it's golden lion.


* Image by Nils Koenning


Nils Koenning, ABP tutor and architectural photographer, opened his exhibition in Venice today. Part of the 14th Venice Architecture Biennale, his 'Common Realities' show presents three urban sites transformed by human intervention.  Each large-scale image invites the viewer to interact with its digital version - via a monitor in the gallery space - and discover a suite of related stories.

Having trained and practiced as an architect in Germany, Nils' career focus shifted when he moved to Australia.  "My commercial practice is now architecture photography and I use the built environment as an instrument for social and cultural investigation," he says.

"I am drawn to capture sites which project a strong sense of place, identity and memory and explore ordinary peoples' responses to their environment."


Andrew Hutson, Associate Professor, Architecture and
Deputy Dean, Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning

One of the nicest things about wandering around Melbourne is coming across little gems that cause you to do a double-take. The Yardmaster’s Building in the Spencer Street rail yards to the north of Southern Cross Station gives cause to pause.

This project by MCR (McBride Charles Ryan) Architects presents as both a large box and modest building despite being four storeys in height. A pattern of embossed stars with interposed windows is created within the dark patina of pre-cast panels. This offers a robust outer skin to the hostile environment of the rail yards. It is best viewed from the pedestrian bridge that leads to the Docklands Stadium to the north of the station from where it appears to emerge from the rail junk. 

While I consider it an urban example of compositional sophistication it also connects with the travellers on the bridge with its applique of stars offering an overt association with the Southern Cross Station behind; an allusion that gets extra treatment through its pet name, by the architects, the ‘Southern Crustacean’.

You have to love it for the pun alone.