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Box Hill Institute, Integrated Technology Hub

By

  • Spowers

Description

This innovative building is a purpose-designed technical skills education facility. It fosters collaborative teaching and learning within varying environments and takes full advantage of exposure to Elgar Road by showcasing a progressive approach to contemporary vocational education, highly aligned to industry requirements.

Box Hill Institute places a strong emphasis on “learning by doing”, and the key challenge of the project was how to meet the specific technical requirements for teaching each trade within the allocated space. The final design delivers an engaging space which functions as a direct education tool as well as providing a fully exposed ‘advertisement’ for the campus.

Key Features

1

Innovation

The greatest challenge to overcome in this project was having limited space to provide teaching areas for each of the trade units. To overcome this, a unique storage and stacking system was developed.

The solution came as a series of self-contained “packages” that could be stacked, deployed and reshuffled much like containers dependant on the timetable. This provided a very dense, rich, activated workshop which enabled the Institute to provide a broader curriculum of trade training to more students and has allowed the Institute to seek sponsorship for each of the “packages”, creating additional income for the Institute.

2

5 Star Greet Star Building

Significant high performance sustainability outcomes have been addressed in the design including but not limited to:
– Highly insulated façade, comprising of composite aluminium wall and roof panels.
– Separate HVAC comprising of gas and electric VRV systems with individual BMS.
– Gas fired radiant heating systems and locally switched fans for optimum indoor environmental control.
– Automatic blinds controlled via the BMS linked to perimeter façade sensors.
– Energy efficient T5 lighting for a background level of 320 lux.
– Domestic solar hot water system and storage facilities.
– Rainwater tank system for water harvesting and recycling.

3

Collaborative Approach

The overall objective aim was to maximise the built area within the site constraints for education use. The facility needed to include staff accommodation, general and collaborative teaching areas, specialist teaching areas and a workshop teaching area to deliver technical skills education, on ground level.

The brief was developed gradually through a series of workshops and briefing sessions between Spowers and Box Hill Institute. This inclusive approach allowed for Spowers to apply existing knowledge of the campus to assist in the process.

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