Kerrie Murphy Building Highly Commended in World Architecture Awards

Allen Jack+Cottier’s Kerrie Muphy Building for Sydney Grammar School in Ultimo, Sydney, NSW has been Highly Commended in the World Architecture News (WAN) Concrete in Architecture Awards.

While the building for primary school children didn’t manage to clinch the top spot in the awards it’s sustainable design and iconic facade caught the judges eye.

WAN has said: “Amazed by the technical achievement of the building, judges have awarded it a ‘Highly Commended’ status for its achievements in the field. The entire building is made up of only 4 pieces of concrete per floor; each piece is not only vast but also ready to erect on site in the lightning time of 3.5 hours per floor. “Exactly what you need” insists Bob Fry. “Such an interesting piece of work.”

The building consists of an arts and crafts facility, a library, staff offices and an indoor sports hall. The roof is to become an outdoor playground shaded by an array of photovoltaic cells. This represents an enormous achievement for the limited budget.

The glazed amorphous openings appear like perfectly formed droplets of water on the surface of the building. ‘Contrasting the mass and weight of concrete with glass and its absolute precision, beautiful reflective qualities and ability to change its energy ratings and U values is something I am most interested in.’ Says Michael Heenan, Design Architect and CEO of AJ+C.

This naturally ventilated, mixed mode building is incredibly efficient. Embedded in the precast composite panels is 50mm of high-density polystyrene – perfect to retain heat. The fully glazed panels were transported to site and each floor was erected in 3.5 hours. We believe this is the first time anywhere that VHB structural glazing tape has been used in this way to stick the glass to a building.

The building was designed for primary school children. There should be a joy and excitement about discovery and learning at that age which is deliberately reflected in the form and feel of the building. It kindles a child-like response and is deeply embedded in its place.

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