- Sustainable Architecture
- Bio21 Nancy Millis Building by DesingInc in Melbourne
The four-level project’s form is a sympathetic response to the constraints of a gently sloping site entirely surrounded by existing buildings, including the Bio21 David Penington Building, on the Parkville campus of the University of Melbourne. The state-of-the-art facility accommodates laboratories, offices and areas for research, training and industry engagement. In response to its context, the architects designed a building that sits firmly embedded within a sequence of landscaped external courtyards, with a tapered brick base that steps upwards, uncurling to a two-storey height. A protective screen provides the exterior’s primary identity and it also shades the interiors from both the northern and western sun.
Internally, the entry leads to the primary circulation which curves upwards towards a multi-level lobby, the quintessential collaboration forum in DesignInc’s project. This generous volume expresses key elements of biophilic design, featuring plenty of natural light, good airflow, views to the outdoors and a series of timber planter boxes. It’s the building’s focal point, intended to support the wellbeing of the Institute’s researchers and other end users by giving them a collaboration-focused place to work outside of the lab. It offers meeting rooms, breakout spaces, terraces and stepped seating before ascending to the south, where a range of highly controlled laboratories and offices provide flexible areas for research and specialist and general support spaces.
The 4500-sqm building designed by DesignInc was developed as a sustainable educational facility and achieved its targeted 5 Star Green Star rating from the Green Building Council of Australia.
Project: DesignInc - https://designinc.com.au/
Project team: Christon Batey-Smith – Project Director; Stephen Webb – Design Director; Ian Khoo – Associate (Design Architect); Cam Smith – Associate; Ross Chalmers – Project Architect
Principal contractor: Cockram Construction
Client: The University of Melbourne CSL
Location: Parkville, Victoria
Images: Dianna Snape