Saving Antarctica’s Environmental Future Research Facility

Location

Clayton, Victoria

Year

2020 – 2021

Services

Principal Consultant
Architecture
Contract Administration
Interior Design
Workplace Strategy and Design
Design team management

Photography
A research facility design outdoor with a grassy area, trees, and a building in the background.

Overview

The brief for this project required the development of a world-class research facility to accommodate Monash University’s Saving Antarctica’s Environmental Future (SAEF) program. This initiative brings together global environmental research leaders from over thirty government and educational organisations.

Our team designed a strategic fitout that transformed the space into a fit-for-purpose department that catered aesthetically to the public-facing role the facility would play, welcoming government officials and high-profile international visitors.

Balancing the needs of diverse users

Diverse stakeholder groups, including researchers, University executives and the broader university community, were highly invested in this project. Bringing together various viewpoints cohesively was a challenge in determining the design. Our team’s task was to consult each group, overcoming the communication parameters of COVID-19, to determine the right balance of technical necessities for researchers and the University’s design expectations to ensure equality between departments and consistency throughout the campus.

Shaping identity

Establishing a sense of arrival was important to elevate the new department. We defined a designated entry, respectfully embedded within the elegant Kenneth Hunt heritage garden, that featured a glass lift to the side of the building, enhancing accessibility.

Outdoor elevator in a research facility design, providing convenient access to different levels.
A walkway in front of a research facility building with an outdoor elevator.

Flexible and future-proofed

Highly praised, our design was considered fit-for-purpose yet versatile. Our ability to balance the SAEF user requirements with Monash design standards resulted in a flexible and future-proofed fitout.

The glass walkway at the entrance of the research facility design building.