Discourse

The Australian Institute of Architects at the Global Climate Strike on 20 September.

Climate emergency: It’s time for architects to act

30 Sep 2019, Ken Maher

Ken Maher argues the time has come for all architects to raise their voices and lead on the issue of climate emergency.

Discourse
The proposed Acacia Remembrance Sanctuary, masterplanned in 2013 by McGregor Coxall and Chrofi, is a concept for a natural burial and ash interment cemetery in Bringelly, New South Wales.

Death by design

26 Sep 2019, David Neustein

How can architects comprehensively rethink the cemetery paradigm in the face of a looming burial crisis and environmental consequences of cremation?

Discourse
Can we build big and still be carbon neutral and sustainable?

Can we build big and still be carbon neutral and sustainable?

25 Sep 2019, David Ness

The building and construction sector bears more responsibility for global emissions than any other sector. Can we lift our sights from green window dressing to make the strong and fundamental changes needed to deal with the climate crisis?

Discourse
Australia is still building 4 in every 5 new houses to no more than the minimum energy standard

Australia is still building 4 in every 5 new houses to no more than the minimum energy standard

23 Sep 2019, Michael Ambrose, Stephen Berry

New analysis finds that four in five new houses are being built to the minimum standard and a negligible proportion to an optimal performance standard.

Discourse
Parliament of Victoria Members' Annexe by Peter Elliott Architecture and Urban Design, winner of the Allan and Beth Coldicutt Award for Sustainable Architecture at the 2019 Victorian Architecture Awards.

Our country is burning, our buildings are hemorrhaging, but architecture could save us

20 Sep 2019, Linda Cheng

Australia is not equipped to deal with the climate crisis. Architects need to rediscover their collective voice and agency.

Discourse
Melbourne’s Southbank.

We have the blueprint for liveable, low-carbon cities. We just need to use it

20 Sep 2019, Deo Prasad

How do we build future cities that are sustainable, liveable and affordable in the age of the climate crisis?

Discourse
A winning entry in the NSW government's missing middle design competition by Madigan Architecture / University of South Australia.

People want and need more housing choice. It’s about time governments stood up to deliver it

16 Sep 2019, Roberta Ryan

Governments need to challenge the vested interests that argue against policies to deliver more diverse housing and seek to preserve Australians’ suburban way of life.

Discourse
Hogg and Lamb’s design for the Kenmore Presbyterian Church in Brisbane’s Pullenvale will work to offer a grand spatial experience within a modest scale that is respectful of its residential setting.

Designing Australia’s sacred spaces and religious buildings: past, present and future

9 Sep 2019, Ursula de Jong

For people of faith, religious buildings are tangible places in which to contemplate a transcendent being. Ursula de Jong examines how universal ideas of divinity, togetherness and worship are expressed in historic and contemporary architecture.

Discourse
Research shows that climate change is contributing to increasing bushfire risk.

Australian Institute of Landscape Architects declares climate emergency

28 Aug 2019, Editorial Desk AAU

The Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA) has declared a Climate and Biodiversity Loss Emergency.

News
The under construction Crown Resorts casino at Barangaroo by Wilkinson Eyre.

Protocol failure: Sydney’s public urbanity is disappearing behind aggressive, private individualism

21 Aug 2019, Laura Harding

Laura Harding argues that Sydney’s planning regulatory framework is putting the city at risk of trading its public landmarks for monuments to gambling and real estate.

Discourse
The graphic used on the Architects Declare website.

Institute endorses architects’ declaration of climate emergency

29 Jul 2019, Editorial Desk AAU

The Australian Institute of Architects has endorsed a declaration of a climate and biodiversity made by Australian architects.

News
The graphic used on the Architects Declare website.

Australian architects join global movement to declare climate emergency

26 Jul 2019, Editorial Desk AAU

Thirty architects and practices have become Australia’s founding signatories in a declaration stating “a climate and biodiversity emergency.”

News
The amphitheatre and plaza in Hassell and Herzog & de Meuron’s competition-winning scheme for Flinders Street Station, Melbourne (2013). No funding for the project had been secured by the Victorian government at the time of the competition.

Regaining a competitive edge

24 Jul 2019, Michael Keniger

The proliferation of architectural design competitions risks devaluing the real merits of a fair and well-ordered process. Michael Keniger surveys a suite of initiatives.

Discourse
Boyd House, Walsh Street, South Yarra 1958. Architect: Robin Boyd.

Why old is new again: The mid-century homes made famous by Don’s Party and Dame Edna

23 Jul 2019, Kirsty Volz

From Robin Boyd to Barry Humphries, the connection between Australia’s mid-century modern houses and popular culture demonstrates their cultural and heritage value.

Discourse
Opal Tower.

Ministers fiddle while buildings crack and burn

19 Jul 2019, Geoff Hanmer

Urgent action is needed to stop defective buildings being built, and building ministers should instructed the Australian Building Codes Board to dump its focus on self-regulation, writes Geoff Hanmer.

Discourse
Opal Tower.

Bring back the Clerk of Works

17 Jul 2019, Michael Hegarty

In light of a number of prominent building failures in Australia, Michael Hegarty explores the role of the Clerk of Works, and the need to return this key project role to Australian construction sites to rectify the shortcomings of quality control in today’s industry.

Discourse
Baudish House (1964) by Ken Woolley.

How the ‘Sydney School’ changed postwar Australian architecture

2 Jul 2019, Davina Jackson

Davina Jackson explores the genesis of the Sydney School of architecture that emerged in the 1960s – and attempts to locate it in the broader modernist movement.

Discourse
The Lacrosse building in Melbourne’s Docklands.

Imagining a continuum of architectural services in building industry reform

28 Jun 2019, Michael Peck

Michael Peck, architect and former National President and CEO of the Australian Institute of Architects, reflects on recent high-profile failures in apartment construction.

Discourse
The sparsely occupied main plaza, except for a group of children on a school outing and some tourists taking photographs.

Apple controversy masks the real failures of Federation Square

25 Jun 2019, Jonathan Daly

Jonathan Daly argues that the recent brouhaha over the failed proposal for a Foster and Partners-designed Apple Store at Melbourne’s Federation Square has masked a deeper problem with the way the space operates as a public place.

Discourse
View of Hobart’s CBD.

Regional case studies: community engagement in Hobart

19 Jun 2019, Helen Norrie

In the third in a series of essays on architecture in Regional Australia, Helen Norrie turns her eye to Hobart, one of Australia’s most rapidly changing regional cities.

Discourse
The graphic used on the Architects Declare website.

UK architecture firms declare climate and biodiversity emergency

11 Jun 2019, Editorial Desk AAU

Some of the UK’s biggest and best-known architecture firms have declared a “climate and biodiversity emergency” and pledged to strengthen working practices to help tackle it.

The world
Geelong waterfront.

Regional initiatives: betting on collaboration

5 Jun 2019, Helen Norrie

In the third in a series of essays that pick apart regional architecture in Australia, Helen Norrie turns her eye to a number of initiatives that hope to transform perceptions of regional life.

Discourse
The Globe, Barcaldine by Brian Hooper Architect, M3 Architecture, architects in association (2015)

Reframing the regional conversation

28 May 2019, Helen Norrie

Regional towns and cities have historically been the backbone of Australia, yet they currently represent a blindspot in urban thinking. In a series of essays to be published on ArchitectureAU over the coming weeks, guest editor Helen Norrie examines the initiatives that are reframing the perceived limitations of smaller populations and geographical dislocation to present compelling alternatives to life in major urban centres.

Discourse
Community consultation during the design development of Wanarn Clinic.

Architecture for Indigenous healthcare in the regions

27 May 2019, Timothy O’Rourke

Timothy O’Rourke reports on a current study investigating Indigenous perceptions and experiences of healthcare design in order to increase the efficacy of cross-cultural design in healthcare architects.

Discourse
New residential towers along Melbourne’s Elizabeth Street as viewed from Queen Victoria Market.

Taming wild cities: the tall buildings of Australia show why we need strong design guidelines

24 May 2019, Timothy Moore

Timothy Moore looks at Melbourne’s “unruly and wild” crop of towers, and asks why there exists such a “gulf between what the centres of Australian cities look like […] and community expectations”

Discourse
The MG/GT administration building in Kununurra, Western Australia by CODA Studio and Mark Phillips Architect (2013) services two Indigenous organizations in the wider Kimberley Region.

Working in Indigenous communities: Fourth World problems

24 May 2019, Kieran Wong

Kieran Wong laments the failings inherent in procuring essential work for Indigenous communities, a process in which politics, bureaucracy and a misguided push for innovation inhibit empowerment and reconciliation.

Discourse
Large, angular sunhoods ameliorate the visual experience of an otherwise typical industrial shed in the design of MPH HQ (1018), enhancing the public value of a commercial building.

Alice Springs: On edge in the centre

22 May 2019, Sue Dugdale

Architect Sue Dugdale, who works and lives in Mparntwe, or Alice Springs, describes a “ a town with edges” with “multiple levels and types of anxiety” that define the town’s built and social fabric.

Discourse
UN Secretariat building by Oscar Niemeyer, Le Corbusier, Wallace Harrison, and others.

Glass skyscrapers: an avoidable environmental folly

21 May 2019, Henrik Schoenefeldt

Henrik Schoenefeldt argues that if architects “had paid more attention to the difficulties of building with glass, the great environmental damage wrought by modern glass skyscrapers could have been avoided.”

Discourse
TPG Architects' extensions to and heritage adaptation of the School of Arts, Cairns Museum building (2017) restore the city's oldest public building while also adding a new chapter to the building's story.

A portrait of regional practice

20 May 2019, Shaneen Fantin

Shaneen Fantin speaks with practitioners in far north Queensland to discuss flexible practice models, working with government and the profits and pitfalls of collaboration.

Discourse
The Sirius building by Tao Gofers, 1979.

An ‘era of disposable public buildings’: Philip Thalis on Sydney’s past and future heritage

15 May 2019, Philip Thalis

In a speech given at the 2019 National Trust Heritage Awards in Sydney, architect and City of Sydney councillor Philip Thalis railed against what he described as the “most voracious of booms.”

Discourse
Daily life on Footscray’s Paisley Street.

Don’t forget the footpath – it’s vital public space

8 May 2019, Yvonne Meng

Using Melbourne’s Footscray as a case study, Yvonne Meng argues that the humble footpath is overlooked, although it is an equally if not more important public space for urban social life.

Discourse
The 2019 National Architecture Conference captains’ lunch. L–R: Clare Cousins, Andy Fergus, Monique Woodward, Timothy Moore, Kerstin Thompson, Stephen Choi, Tania Davidge, Shelley Penn, and Julia Cambage. Absent: Nic Brunsdon and Kieran Wong.

Call to action: Defining the ‘Collective Agency’ of Australian architects

1 May 2019, Katelin Butler, Gemma Savio

The 2019 National Architecture Conference curators have enlisted eight industry thought leaders who will steer conversations around advocacy and activism in architecture.

Discourse
Aerial view of Centennial Park, Sydney.

New minister for public spaces is welcome – now here are ten priorities for action

26 Apr 2019, Kurt Iveson

The re-elected NSW government has appointed Rob Stokes as minister for public spaces. Kurt Iveson pens a 10-point plan to make public spaces more plentiful and accessible for all.

Discourse
The EY Centre by FJMT.

Reshaping Sydney by design – few know about the mandatory competitions, but we all see the results

23 Apr 2019, Gethin Davidson, Robert Freestone

The City of Sydney’s design competition policy has resulted in 26 completed projects and 46 approved proposals. Researchers consider the benefits and drawbacks of this now two-decade-old policy.

Discourse
Richmond Hektik Kebab and HSP is located at a petrol station on a busy intersection in Richmond. Access by car is imperative – hence it faces the street and has flashing signage.

Kebab urbanism: Melbourne’s ‘other’ cafe makes the city a more human place

25 Mar 2019, Tahj Rosmarin, Sidh Sintusingha

The ubiquitous kebab van, which has become part of the urban character of Melbourne over the past three decades, can teach policymakers and planners a lot about placemaking.

Discourse
Research in large practice

Research in large practice

18 Mar 2019, Sandra Kaji-O'Grady, Naomi Stead

Naomi Stead and Sandra Kaji O’Grady introduce their guest-edited dossier for Architecture Australia, which looks at the state of research in large architecture practices in Australia.

Discourse
A scene from the Practice in Research/Research in Practice symposium in 
Brisbane in 2017, which explored the diverse forms practice-based research may take and its value both within academia and the architectural profession.

Arrested development

13 Mar 2019, Peter Raisbeck

Peter Raisbeck argues that the lack of formalized research and development in Australian architecture practice is stymieing innovation.

Discourse
Murray Fraser.

A British perspective on practice-based architectural research

8 Mar 2019, Murray Fraster

Murray Fraser, vice-dean of research at the Bartlett School of Architecture and as chair of the Research and Innovation Group at RIBA, explores practice-based research.

Discourse
Nitotschka Titchkosky, now co-CEO of BVN.

Research in large Australian practices: A roundtable discussion

4 Mar 2019, Sandra Kaji-O'Grady, Naomi Stead

A frank and revealing discussion about how and why large Australian practices organize and fund research, and how they disseminate its findings.

Discourse
The Lacrosse building in Melbourne's Docklands.

Cladding fire risks have been known for years. Lives depend on acting now

12 Feb 2019, Geoff Hanmer

While property sector seems to be offering its version of “thoughts and prayers” following the Neo200 fire the we have known of the risk for years and the problem can be rectified.

Discourse
The Sirius building by Tao Gofers, 1979.

Selling Sirius would be a ‘grave mistake’

25 Jan 2019, Shaun Carter, Alex Greenwich

Clover Moore, Shaun Carter, Alex Greenwich and Jamie Parker have penned an open letter asking the NSW premier to reconsider the sale of the Sirius building in this open letter.

Discourse