137 St Georges Terrace
/design intent “Convert spaces within a heritage building into a cutting-edge facility that’s mindful of heritage, environment, industry and corporate sector needs.”
The project objective was to facilitate increased engagement with the University’s current and future industry partners, and strengthen Curtin University’s identity and presence in the CBD alongside its current St George’s Terrace facility. We were engaged to design a welcoming, high quality and compliant facility that supports learning and engagement, and is enhanced by the significant heritage elements of the Perth Technical College property (built by WA Government Architect Hillson Beasley between 1909-10).
Additionally, we were briefed to harness the design and artistic strength of Curtin University Alumni, whilst reaching a Green Star certification.
The brief called to encourage executive-level industry engagement for both executives and post graduates; a corporate boardroom to facilitate industry engagement with the university and an event space appealing to the corporate sector. These spaces within the facility were also required to host industry and university events.
Working with a team of 20 key stakeholders and consultants, we were required to create a seamless and highly complex acoustic, audio-visual and lighting design to further enhance the user’s interactions.
Located on the upper level of the building, the Reception and Waiting room are at the Main Entrance with direct access to the Executive Boardroom. A corridor leads users into the Breakout room with kitchen, facilities and formal Learning space which run along the northern side of the building. The facility’s largest room – the Gallery room – is a flexible space of combined formal learning (with hidden storeroom for additional chairs and folding tables), breakout and informal learning zones. These areas can be combined as the one function or seminar area (to host 110 people) or morph for dining or cocktail events. Utilised in their day-to-day intent as learning spaces, we provided on site technology and furniture solutions that adapt as needed.
Room capacities are designed with devices such as generous seating footprints, hidden storage, layering of artwork, quality furniture and material selections, working together to reinforce the executive experience.
Art Nouveau details in the original lead-light windows and staircases, informed the palette direction, in both colour and texture. Research unearthed a deep talent of Curtin Alumni, and from an early stage the light, furniture & textile works by this group were prioritised for site specific commissions. Freestanding furniture and decorative details were meticulously tailored to speak to the building’s history. We were also very fortunate to work with curators of John Curtin Gallery, home of the university’s prestigious collection, to access a very special collection of alumni artworks.
Throughout the spaces, we worked to retain the heritage integrity of the space through sensitive detailing and a light-touch approach, while crafting a flexible, cutting-edge learning and meeting space that harnesses the talent of university Alumni. The interior resolution is an optimistic and multifaceted approach – paying homage to heritage and crafted in line with experience and engagement found in leading global corporate environments.