2023 – WINNER, New Educational Campus, Learning Environments Australasia VIC/TAS Chapter Awards
2023 – WINNER, Best School Project Above $10 Million, Victorian School Design Awards
2023 – WINNER, Learning Space of the Year, FRAME Awards
2023 – SHORTLISTED, Education & Research, Sustainability Awards
2023 – SHORTLISTED, Educational Architecture, National Architecture Awards
2023 – SHORTLISTED, The Learning Space, INDE.Awards
2023 – WINNER, Educational Architecture, Victorian Architecture Awards
2023 – WINNER, Best of State Commercial Design (VIC), Australian Interior Design Awards
2023 – COMMENDATION, Public Design, Australian Interior Design Awards
The Centre for Higher Education Studies (CHES) is set amongst the dense urban fabric of Melbourne’s South Yarra, on the traditional lands of the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung and Bunurong peoples of the East Kulin Nations, and was delivered in collaboration with Fieldwork for the Victorian School of Building Authority.
CHES supports high-achieving Victorian secondary school students with state-of-the-art learning spaces, specialist facilities and leading expertise, offering a unique pathway for students to transition from secondary to tertiary studies. The design of the teaching facilities allows for highly specialised subjects to be taught from a range of university courses, including Biological Sciences, Exercise and Sports Science, Innovation Ecosystems and Sustainable Development, and Space Technology.
From early sketch design phase, the concept of integrating a central atrium was critical in unlocking the potential of the site, drawing natural light deep into the narrow site and ensuring each learning space has equitable amenity. A public interface to Chapel Street is fostered with a corrugated, pre-cast concrete façade, animated with planter boxes of cascading greenery.
The floor plan is mirrored on each side of the atrium, allowing each learning environment to benefit from views to nature — either from the atrium or across Chapel Street or the western terrace — improving learning outcomes and developing students’ observational relationships with ecology. State-of-the-art audio-visual facilities are embedded in all learning spaces to allow for virtual and hybrid learning from anywhere in the state.
Collaboration credits – Fieldwork