Best Practices in Educational Facilities Investments

Scotch College, Science, Design and Technology Building, Swanbourne, WA, Australia

Exemplary design categories: art and design facilities, energy efficiency, green school, science laboratories, vocational facilities

How the facility meets the needs of education and communities:
The main objective of the project was to create a facility that is at the forefront of learning and technology, and which also serves as a learning tool for students, especially concerning sustainability. It was imperative to portray to the wider community the College’s aspirations and standing as an academy of exceptional quality. It was also important for the design and materials to complement those already existing, in addition to the concept of transparency. Thus, a contemporary structure of glass, steel, masonry and concrete was developed. Various types of glazing were used to create transparency. In addition, steel structure, metal roofing and cladding – materials that were introduced more recently on the campus - were used. The design incorporates a series of bi-fold doors to convert general learning areas into “house meeting areas”. Structural elements and core building materials and services are exposed to serve as educational tools, for example there are digital screens displaying the building's energy usage in the entry foyer for students to monitor. Natural light and space dominate the internal design, which incorporates a range of ESD initiatives, including energy (e.g. roof-mounted solar panels provide heating for the adjacent swimming pool) and water efficiency (e.g. rain water harvesting). Materials have high recyclable content, and photovoltaic cells provide external walkway lighting. High levels of internal glazing between classrooms and into corridors provides passive supervision to reduce bullying, and there are external self-locking doors, with a full security alarm system.

Involvement of users and the local community in the planning and design process:
Students from various year groups were consulted during the pre-design process, and key staff were consulted about the detailed planning and technical aspects during the design and documentation process.

Activity Areas: 6 science laboratories, 3 composite laboratories, 3 design & technology workshops, 1 graphics design lab, 6 general learning areas, 2 staff preparation areas, 2 staff study areas (10 staff each), 2 senior staff offices, general storage areas, 1 lift, 21 car bays, student & staff toilets.

Project costs: AUD 12,000,000.00

Source: Submitted to OECD for "Designing for Education: Compendium of Exemplary Educational Facilities 2011" in 2010

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User perspectives (1)

” The Science and Design Technology Building at Scotch College was opened in May 2009. It was a remarkable building that flagged a different approach to teaching and learning. Taylor Robinson constructed a building that served the needs of pastoral care and curriculum delivery. Three “house” groups have their “home” within the building as well as catering for 21st century needs of complex Science and Design and Technology departments. All these needs are held together by a building where light and space dominate and these architectural themes dominate throughout the building. The building, while serving the very real practical needs of the College, also serves to symbolically demonstrate the flexibility and complexity of contemporary teaching and learning.”
Rev. Andrew Syme, Principal, Scotch College

Images (5)

Drawings (3)

Basement Plan & Ground Floor & First Floor Plan (Registration required)
application/pdf
Credit: Taylor Robinson
Sections & Elevations (Registration required)
application/pdf
Credit: Taylor Robinson
Location Plan (Registration required)
application/pdf
Credit: Taylor Robinson