2015 Awards

There always seems to be a flurry of urgency that sets the pace for the start to each new year, with architects busying themselves compiling their entries for the array of awards deadlines that ensue well into the first half of the year. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate my clients who secured awards and acknowledgement from their peers and industry, and thank them for entrusting me with the very important job of documenting their work. Every project was shot either while I was in the late stages of pregnancy, or in the early stages of being a Mum, so for me each of these projects is linked personally and poignantly with the creation of life.

I’ll begin with the most prestigious being the Australian Institute of Architects (AIA) Awards and its tightly contested 12 categories that form the awards program.

Library at The Dock – Docklands, VIC

I’m sure many people at the City of Melbourne were very excited and proud to see Library at The Dock receive the Sustainable Architecture, Allan and Beth Coldicutt Award. A joint initiative of Places Victoria, Lend Lease and the City of Melbourne, it is the only public building in Australia to have achieved a 6-star Green Star as-built rating from the Green Building Council of Australia. The City of Melbourne must be applauded for their commitment to ensuring Green buildings become a viable part of the Melbourne CBD landscape. Water is collected from the roof and discharged to a 55,000L tank in the nearby Victoria Green park for reuse within the building and 85kw solar panels on the roof supply approximately 30 per cent of the building’s total operational power. Often highly criticised in the media when problems present with new green technologies, these projects are imperative in forging the way for sustainable architecture to become a viable proposition for the private commercial and residential sector.

A collaboration by Clare Design + Hayball (Architect of Record), this building is somewhat of a welcome anomaly amidst the glitter of the Docklands. Situated in one of the more prestigious precincts along the waterfront of Victoria Harbour, Library at The Dock offers a refuge for the public to enjoy the old school tactile experience of the printed medium, as well as housing digital collections. The northern oriented waterfront elevation provides various seating options to settle and enjoy the warmth of a Melbourne winters day in the peaceful quiet that libraries afford us.

The timber in this building is just incredible and exquisite, featuring 100-year-old reclaimed ironbark hardwood beams and columns from a demolished bridge in Brisbane. The promenade decking is made from recycled timber extracted from the old wharf structure at Victoria Harbour.

Even if books aren’t your thing, the library includes a performance space, a technology and media hub, reading lounges, community meeting rooms, heritage and art exhibitions and quiet study areas. Library at The Dock has been specifically designed to serve as a community hub offering a ‘Public Living Room’ for the Docklands community. It is definitely worth a visit just to experience the beautiful design and materiality.
©Photo Dianna Snape©Photo Dianna Snape©Photo Dianna Snape

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Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital – Brisbane, QLD

A very big project deserves a very big ‘Congratulations’. Lyons Architects in joint venture with Conrad Gargett received the John Dalton Award for Building of the Year for the Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital.

Australia’s largest and most advanced paediatric facility spanning 12 floors, the hospital represents the most significant capital investment in children’s health services in Queensland’s history.

Designed around the idea of a ‘living tree’, we navigated its trunks and branches for 7 days over 2 separate visits, amidst 40 degree heat. This wasn’t any ordinary architectural commission, we worked closely with staff and patients to record the life of the hospital, documenting surgeries and patient treatments. Raised in QLD and having spent some of my early childhood in the Mater Hospital, this project was close to my heart. Having also just given birth to my first child, it was quite confronting to photograph the fragile little souls in the ICU. The children and parents I had the privilege of meeting, were some of the bravest I have known. Downloading the ‘Frozen’ soundtrack on my iPhone and singing ‘Let it Go’ with the most beautiful little girl over breakfast, accompanied by my assistant Allan, was indeed a highlight. I went home each night from 10 hours of shooting and hugged my baby boy a little tighter.


©Photo Dianna Snape

©Photo Dianna Snape

©Photo Dianna Snape

©Photo Dianna Snape

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Sylvia Walton Building (Latrobe University) – Bundoora, VIC

The 5-star energy rated Sylvia Walton Building at Latrobe University’s Bundoora Campus by Lyons Architects was awarded a commendation for Educational Architecture. Housing 1500 students and 200 staff the building includes teaching, study and office areas, computer labs and student meeting rooms.


 ©Photo Dianna Snape

©Photo Dianna Snape

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Ballarat Community Health Primary Care – Lucas, VIC

Congratulations to Designinc for winning the Regional Prize for Ballarat Community Health Primary Care, located just outside Ballarat in the emerging suburb of Lucas. You are welcomed into the building by a central double height atrium that runs through the centre of the building, providing an abundance of natural light, a great sense of volume and a tool for navigating through the building. The stairs have cleverly been designed to act as seating for community events. In line with Designinc’s ethos, this building uses sustainable materials, water tanks and solar heating. I am always thrilled to see good design making its way into the outer suburbs and enriching the lives of the broader community.©Photo Dianna Snape
 ©Photo Dianna Snape©Photo Dianna Snape
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Boomerang House – ACT

Congratulations to Joanna Nelson on receiving the Residential Architecture – Houses (Alterations and Additions) Gene Willsford Award. Joanna’s work demonstrates a commitment to the integrity of the original architecture and her clients brief. It is always a pleasure to explore and resolve with her the subtlety of the transition from old to new.


©Photo Dianna Snape

©Photo Dianna Snape
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Elizabeth Blackburn School of Sciences & Brighton Grammar Middle School

Onto the CEFPI Australasia Region Educational Facilities Awards, I couldn’t be happier for ClarkeHopkinsClarke who do very well resolved and responsible educational design. This acknowledgement is well overdue, winning three awards for two projects. The Elizabeth Blackburn School of Sciences won the award for Education Initiative/Design Solution for an Innovative Program as well as the Overall Winner for the Australasian Region and Brighton Grammar Middle School project took out the New Construction, Major Facility Award.


©Photo Dianna Snape

©Photo Dianna Snape

©Photo Dianna Snape

©Photo Dianna Snape

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Congratulations to Allison Hopper for being shortlisted for the Houses Awards – New House under 200 m2. The Foster house is a beautifully located project, nestled perfectly within the context of its site. Wishing Allison all the best for the 31 July announcement.


©Photo Dianna Snape