Monash University Learning and Teaching Building by John Wardle Architects
Interior Architecture: National Award
Australian Institute of Architects
Monash University’s Learning and Teaching Building is a fine addition to the Clayton campus. While the building plays a physical role as a gateway to the university, its less tangible but perhaps more important role is as a gateway for new students to the campus experience. The low-rise building is a successful student hub that encourages teaching, learning and study in various pre-class, in-class and post-class settings. Its design concept is of an interior landscape that recalls the places found in a city or neighbourhood. The interior architecture uses light, views and materials and finishes usually associated with a building exterior, combining these with spaces and volumes that recall city structures (brick forms that enclose lecture theatres) or topography (staircase bleachers and platforms that tumble through circulation spaces). Colour is used to signify “fast routes” through the interior topography and this combines with prominent indicators that suggest bridges, streets and small buildings, providing the type of visual wayfinding devices that can be found in a city. This building offers a delightfully considered and appropriately scaled experience for new students.
For more coverage, read Rachel Hurst’s project review from Architecture Australia Sept/Oct 2018.