Architects: James Deans & Associates
Location: Bell Post Hill, Geelong, Australia
Project Architects: James Deans, Mike Nowson
Client: Kardinia International College
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: Courtesy of James Deans & Associates
From the architect. The Katsumata Centre at Kardinia International College was created as a tribute to the founder of the school and renowned educational advocate Mr Yoshimaro Katsumata. The brief from the school was to create a multiuse facility which symbolizes the schools progressive approach to educational delivery and the culture that the school embodies.
The project has a relatively long history and an extended planning and formative period, with a sequence of initial schemes done for the site in 2004. The initial schemes for the site encompassed a 1600 seat state of art full theatre auditorium; however the significant costs coupled with the building’s inability to adapt to any other use led to a revision of the core design brief.
The final design intent was to create a building which functions as a sporting facility and as full performing arts theatre - both without compromise to functionality, (as is generally typical to School multipurpose facilities).This to maximise the potential uses for the school and community for the given budget.This was achieved through the intelligent planning and intensive liaison with the John Goodfellow (School Principal and project visionary), stakeholders (from the sporting and performance/stage theatrics) and services, acoustic, lighting and related consultants.
The design allows the users through mechanised daylight control, programmable lighting controls and an automated retractable seating system to change from sports stadium to a fully functional theatre seating 1200 people in under 15 minutes.
The building creates a direct link to the existing Gymnasium creating a “sports Precinct” in accordance with the schools master plan.This also allowed the school to maximise exposure on approach from Ballarat Road (a major tributary road leading to / from Geelong.)
The form externally of the main volume was developed by taking the Modernist derived grid and articulation then varying this to suit the new program of the extension.This logic was developed further within the facetted glass and aluminium clad façade to deform formal Modernist building language to create a contemporary form and interior space.
Sustainability measures include the use of super insulated composite external linings, sensor controlled lighting, water storage, use of evaporative cooling, and a natural ventilation strategy utilizing a series of mechanical controlled valves with acoustic dampeners in the raking component of the south façade of the main volume.
The inverted truss system and sawtooth structural system was developed to allow the large spans, natural light, to provide non coplaner surfaces (for acoustics) and the means to conceal HVAC services.
The interior treatment to the foyer was developed in conjunction with graphic artists/designers, the school and the Katsumata family to reflect the history of the founder and his family. Through this montage of ideas a decorative and factual motif featuring layered glass, biographical information and a hand written Japanese poem of particular symbolic reference, has been used to pay homage to the schools founder.