St Columba’s College Central Campus Redevelopment
- Rush\Wright Associates
- 2 Leslie Rd, Essendon, Victoria Australia, 3040 Melbourne
- St Columba’s College
- Mark Rodriguez
Rush Wright Associates worked on this project over a seven years period. The design and planning created a unique series of teaching and learning spaces for St Columba’s College in Melbourne, Australia.
The focus on social potential and year-round use, predominantly in the cooler months, has created a distinctive design solution created around bringing the campus together in a series of special meeting places and areas for teaching and learning-outside.
The courtyards read as large outdoor ‘room’ with a mix of serious, fun, contemplative, spiritual and nurturing spaces around a central circulation spine.
The project exemplifies how careful investment in finely-crafted external works can transform humble spaces into high-value environments that support the social, intellectual and pedagogic agendas of all schools.
The existing courtyard contained tired garden beds, retaining walls and large spans of red brick paving. The design eliminated all the straight lines of this structured area. RWA created an inspiring, innovative and invitational space with lots of “wow” elements to engage everyone that moved through these area.
The key elements of this courtyard included an active outdoor auditorium for conducting engaging group activities, green banks to complement the sports court, a piazza influenced flexible use space, a new light and bright shade canopy, a contemporary representation of a shade providing tree and extensive but subtle night lighting.
The Sophia Library courtyard structure reinforces the architectural concept of connecting the library back into the school fabric. The entry realignment created an improved outdoor circulation spine and opportunity to improve the outdoor spaces adjacent to the library, for casual and formal outdoor education use, for social and community use, thereby extending the library out into the landscape (visually and physically).