University of New South Wales Law Building / Lyons

© John Gollings Photography

Architects: Lyons
Location: Kensignton Campus, , New South Wales, Australia
Project area: 12,000 sqm
Project year: 2006
Photographs: John Gollings Photography

© John Gollings Photography

The Faculty of Law building is a new addition to the University of New South Wales’ Kensington campus and delivers a new and innovative learning and research facility for the University’s Faculty of Law and Taxation.

Located on a high profile site on University Mall, the new 11,500 sqm four level building reflects the pedagogical model of this School of Law and through its form contributes to the urban definition of the landscaped Mall space.

© John Gollings Photography

The building has been designed as a low rise structure to promote maximum interactivity between occupants in the building – staff, students and visitors. The building also provides strong connections back to the broader campus and to the public realm beyond.

Light filled atria spaces, open staircases and landscaped courtyard spaces enhance this visual interconnectivity, providing a high amenity work and study environment for Law and University users.

level 1 plan

The design is structured around a central ‘agora’ space which connects all levels of the building and provides a place for formal and informal meeting and exchange.

The Law library, located over two levels, is the symbolic and functional heart of the new building. This daylit space allows students and academic staff to study and undertake research in a purpose designed setting overlooking the treed environment of University Mall.

© John Gollings Photography

The ground floor includes a 350 seat auditorium and two horseshoe shaped learning spaces for formal and discursive learning. Other teaching spaces include flexible, flat floor spaces with movable disking and seating to reflect a variety of pedagogical models and learning styles.

Externally the building presents a distinctive ‘pavilion’ form to University Mall with a single folded wall and roof profile. This form reflects one of the principal concepts for the new building – ‘one Faculty, one building’.

© John Gollings Photography

The building embodies a range of environmentally sustainable initiatives including mixed mode air-conditioning to the office spaces, selection of materials and finishes for low embodied energy and engineering systems and architectural design features which minimise energy consumption.

The building represents new thinking in Law School design. As a contemporary and progressive building it supports and enhances the learning and research work of the School and provides a flexible long term asset for the University.

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* Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
Cite: "University of New South Wales Law Building / Lyons" 08 Jan 2011. ArchDaily. Accessed 27 May 2015. <>
  • op


  • jrmy

    there’s a lot of interesting things in this project, the main facade looks good, lines are sharp and elegant, but there’s also an accumulation of patterns, colors in it that makes the building crowded without any person in there… and the plan also conveys this feeling.

  • lizard

    Well, based on the thing being built, evidently (someone with deep pockets believes this is) an accurate metaphor for lawyerspeak…. Kinda tormented in there, methinks.

    I agree–OMG.

  • unfair

    I would like to know why law schools around the world are the ‘best’ (new, modern, beautiful, clean,…) buildings in a campus, and architecture schools use to be the ‘worst’ (old, ugly, dirty,…) ones. We deserve a building like this, not law students!!! lol

  • fokt

    It’s too much and becomes muddy. There is a lack of hierarchy and finesse.

  • up_today_arch

    I agree… in general too much ideas for one building… but interesting indeed…

  • Jason

    In my opinion, the existence of this project is unfortunate.

  • http://httpL// RW Spurlock


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