The Braggs, University of Adelaide by BVN Donovan Hill and Hames Sharley
Public Architecture: National Commendation
Australian Institute of Architects
The Braggs building is a strong addition to the research building typology. Combining physics, chemistry and biology facilities, it allows deeply integrated transdisciplinary research collaboration. Despite exacting technical specifications, it achieves a very comfortable and human-centric environment. The building is a well-mannered component in the university masterplan, responding to view axes and circulation routes, and framing one side of the Maths Lawn. The form and colour are a contemporary interpretation of the brick used throughout the campus. The internal planning effortlessly solves security and public access requirements.
The use of natural light and external views to what are often internal, functional spaces is the greatest achievement of the project. A long atrium runs the length of the south facade of the building and facilitates interaction and collaboration, as well as bringing light and a connection to the exterior to the basement areas. The north facade uses a series of fixed sunbreakers, blinds and sliding internal panels to allow maximum enjoyment of natural light and views with the flexibility to control it.
The design provides maximum transparency, with many spaces having both external views and atrium views. Collaborative spaces are always close at hand and are distributed throughout the atrium.
The Braggs building is a clear, elegant building of very high quality.