Planning: JBA Urban Planning
Quantity Surveyor + Building Certifier: Group DLA
Structural, Civil, Facades + Esd: Aurecon
Landscape Architects: Taylor Brammer
Mechanical + Electrical: Waterman AHW
Specialist Lighting: Electrolight
Fire + Hydraulics: Arup
Vertical Transportation + Fire Safety: Aecom
Acoustics + Vibration: Renzo Tonin & Associates
From the architect. Selected from over 60 entries in an international two-stage design competition, the design of the new Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology engages with the urban context and conveys the university’s position at the intersection of creativity and technology.
On a prominent urban site, the building creates a gateway to the university’s revitalised city campus and the southern end of Sydney’s CBD. Fourteen levels, plus four below ground, accommodate state-of-the-art lecture rooms, academic offices, seminar rooms, teaching and research laboratories, student union, food and recreation areas, with bicycle and car parking.
The building is expressed as a singular sculptural object, setting it apart from the more traditional architectural expression of its neighbours and from proposed towers at the Fraser Broadway Development opposite the site.
Four tilted and skewed plates envelope the building’s volume. The plates are made of aluminium sheets perforated in a pattern derived from the binary code for ‘University of Technology Sydney Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology’. ‘Gills’ creased into the surface of each plate punctuate the façade, visually reinforcing the sense of plate as skin and symbolically allowing the building to breathe.
The faculty’s collaborative learning culture materialises in the ultra-thin crevasse-like atrium which links all teaching, learning and social spaces. It’s a dynamic space occupied by open stairs, random bridge links and lounges for informal encounters, with circulation along its edges. The raw aesthetic achieved internally with materials such as off form concrete and Corten steel engenders a warehouse quality, aligning the faculty with environments favoured by the creative industries. Offering naturally-lit access through the building at ground level, the crevasse directly links the university to the local neighbourhood.
The interior architecture has an innovative pedagogical approach and a technology rich environment at its core, which aims to support student needs and future industry trends. The latest in cutting-edge technology, includes robotics, computer and human-centred design labs, and a 3D data visualisation facility, the Data Arena – the most advanced research facility of its type in Australia.
An extensive range of environmentally sustainable design initiatives make a substantial contribution to achieving best practice standards in the faculty accommodation. The design targets a minimum 5 star Green Star rating, and is expected to deliver an energy savings of 30- 45%, a potable water saving of 20-30% and a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions over benchmarked tertiary educational buildings with similar functional spaces. The shading of the binary code screen alone is estimated to bring about a 10-15% operational energy saving.
Also known as the Broadway Building, the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology forms a key part of the university’s vision to deliver an iconic and connected campus, a ten year $1 billion redevelopment initiative that will help transform the southern approach to the Sydney CBD.