A collaborative student space for informal learning that provides an identity space for students
Phillips Smith Conwell
In this proposal, the existing, bland and uninviting space has been developed into a dynamic collaborative seating zone and hub for the surrounding buildings. The design recognises its location and orientation to provide an environment which goes beyond the confines of the undercroft and maintains the numerous circulation routes through and around the space.
A variety of alternative zones have been created to offer partially screened discussion pods, study booths, raised bench seating, a meeting table and platform seating and in conjunction with whiteboards provides students with a covered outdoor study collaboration area.
A new canopy and feature finishes on the walls adjacent the building entries improved identity and wayfinding. The canopy also helps to increase weather protection and the soffit arrangement assists in expanding the collaborative seating space beyond the line of the existing beam from the building above.
In addition to the variety of collaborative seating zones, the decorative treatment on the soffit transforms the undercroft space by disguising the existing concrete elements while also improving acoustics. The soffit treatment also allow concealed reticulation of services.
A new stair arrangement leading from the north east paths improved pedestrian flows while a durable material palette has been proposed which includes powdercoated steel seating, colorbond sheeting, ‘modwood’ timber, compact laminate and painted CFC.