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    • 11 October 2018

      Exploring the boundary between indoors and outdoors

      Through green space and an open atrium, our latest project at Australia’s Queensland University of Technology is a seamless transition between human and natural spaces.

    • Our new Education Precinct Building at the Queensland University of Technology breathes with the campus. It establishes a confluence between human and natural spaces, drawing students in to inviting social spaces while spilling plant life through its glass façade to the wider campus.

      A new campus hub for learning, research, and socialization, our addition to the Queensland University of Technology’s Kelvin Grove Campus incorporates an open ground-level design that connects campus thoroughfares while inviting pedestrians to linger in the sunlight common space. In this sense, the Education Precinct Building serves as an extension of natural pedestrian pathways throughout campus, and also provides an appealing, versatile space for academic and social gathering.

      While sun-shaded upper floors provide private spaces for lecture halls and research facilities, the open glass façade of the ground floor atrium establishes visual and physical connectivity with the surrounding campus. The building’s terraced form ascends a hill toward the QUT Library, incorporating a broad, planted outdoor staircase designed as both a pedestrian thoroughfare and an informal outdoor social space. Opening the space to foot traffic elevates the activity within, and heightens the sense of seamless connection between indoors and out.

      Local vegetation

      Viewed from a distance, a natural gradient of green space appears: Vegetation from adjacent hillsides spreads into planted terraces lining the building’s outdoor staircase, then through the glass facade into the atrium’s hanging vines and stepped gardens. In designing the flow of green spaces throughout the project site, we collaborated with Australian landscape architects Taylor Cullity Lethlean. Known for their work on the National Arboretum Canberra and Melbourne’s Royal Botanic Gardens, the firm’s designs explore the relationship between the Australian people and the natural landscape. For this project, their perspective ensures that the building’s green spaces reflect an authentic, artistic extension of native Australian flora.

      The Education Precinct Building is a transitional zone between social and learning spaces; a fluid segue between the natural and human environment. Positioned as a campus thoroughfare and a new student common space, the design promises new social connections in a setting intimately connected with the greater campus and the Australian natural environment.