- Breathe Architecture
As part of the New Student Precinct, The University of Melbourne were looking to design a triple bottom line student experience. The intention was to build on cultural diversity, be holistically sustainable and socially responsible, offering a unique student experience. Through a series of pop-ups, The University of Melbourne were interested in a modular outcome that could tactfully be re-located to form precincts of activation and enhance student experiences.
A holistic and collaborative approach to this project was adopted. It was about a systems change – not about one building or one tenant.
The School of Ecosystem and Forest Science are leaders in national research on the urban heat island effect, cooling systems via green roofs and reintroduction of biodiversity into urban landscapes. The pop-ups provide the framework to roll out this research, acting as a living lab that educates students in tangible, sustainable and social outcomes.
We wanted to minimise embodied energy in the structure, tenant energy usage and offer an opportunity for carbon neutral solutions. We worked closely with the University to find a values aligned social enterprise that could deliver a socially just service focused on reducing climate impact.
Structurally, the pods are built from 100% recycled steel. Australian Class 1 recycled timber battens clad each pod, with recycled timber floor boards and 100% renewable cork flooring to the interior. Upholstery is 100% recycled, made from plastic bottles. All applied finishes are low VOC. Materials are fixed mechanically with no adhesives to ensure future recyclability. Importantly, the pods are 100% electric in operation – there is no gas connection.
Home.Two is plant based with fully biodegradable packaging, encouraging customers to bring reusable cups/containers. Coffee grounds and food scraps are composted. 100% of profits support young people experiencing homelessness.
Home.Two builds on cultural diversity with a holistic approach to social and environmental sustainability to offer a unique student experience.
The design and build of the café and study pod on the campus’ Monash Road Pop-up site has been received positively by the University community, significantly enhancing the aesthetics, usability and function of the site. It has also become a popular meeting place for students at one of the busiest campus entries.
The pop-ups are an accumulation of three simple elements; the pod, the platform and the plants. The pods are assembled to form smaller precincts within the campus, providing study and hospitality space. The pods are connected by platforms, primarily used for seating and access but also offer opportunities for performances to take place. The plants ground the pods. Drawing upon University research, Indigenous plants are embedded in the roof structure acting as a cooling device.
This project is about equality, social justice and sustainability. It’s about helping educate future leaders in what positive change can look and feel like.
We teamed up with Society Melbourne – a not for profit social enterprise that trains young people experiencing homelessness, in hospitality. Society Melbourne work in collaboration with Launch Housing to house their employees safely. We also collaborated with organisations such as ANZ who helped fund the project through their social impact team. We created Home.Two, the first tenancy of the New Student Precinct pop-up.