From the architect:
Located at the entry to the Parade College campus the learning hub is a symbol of school’s progressive pedagogy and adoption of technology into its teaching practice. The Nash Learning Centre has incorporated diverse, multi-mode learning spaces into its overall planning. The Hub focuses on common spaces with a mixture of communal desk space and private learning areas. There is a focus on light open spaces that are functional and stimulating learning environments.
The existing campus is a robust brown brick modernist design. The new learning hub is a departure from the overarching architectural style and continuity of campus; almost the antithesis in colour, materiality and design language. The modernist lines have been replaced by arches as the concept focused on creating an architecturally significant building, which was at the centre of the campus, reflecting traditions of faith and community. The learning hub acts literally as a colonnade, typical of the architectural language traditionally employed for an educational or monastic campus. The colonnade directs the school community through it, with the spaces within the archways able to be occupied as a learning common area.
RELATIONSHIP OF BUILT FORM TO CONTEXT
The Nash Learning Centre is located at the forefront of the school and is a deliberate point of difference to the existing context being 1960’s chocolate brick. It breaks the established context with its clean white built form. The juxtaposed built form is a point of pride displaying school’s identity of education and technology within architecture, and the building acts as sign that the school is evolving. The arches promote a physical connection via entrances linking existing areas of the school as well as a visual connection to its setting through arches to treetops outside, and a connection to the community through its prominent presence at the entrance of the school.
- Throughout design and construction there was a focus on retaining as much of the original structure as possible, with the outcome being the retention of the basement structure as well as the ground floor slab.
- Being designed largely as a colonnade, the spaces between the arches were enclosed with glazing. The large areas of glass, allowing the building to be flooded with natural light, were tempered with a ceramic frit applied to control the amount of heat gain and solar ingress.