Conrad Gargett Ancher Mortlock Woolley
Conrad Gargett is a progressive Australian architecture firm with a vibrant legacy of prominent and enduring designs dating back to 1890. The firm has continuously evolved to remain at the forefront of architecture in Australia, recently bringing together three national award winning firms: Conrad Gargett Architecture, Riddel Architecture and Ancher Mortlock Woolley. Conrad Gargett delivers projects Australia-wide and internationally, demonstrating world-class expertise across a diverse range of sectors including health, heritage, research, defence, education and commercial.
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Queen Victoria Building
The grand shopping arcade in the Queen Victoria Building is a Sydney icon & became a major city attraction since its reopening as a retail centre in 1984. Conrad Gargett’s new interior refurbishment concept updates the facility, whilst seeking to respect, re-establish some of the original 1890 features and retain the unique heritage qualities of the building. The two new banks of escalators in the existing north and south gallery voids of the building have been carefully located to one side, to preserve the vistas along the arcade to the central dome space, the symbolic heart of the QVB. The escalators are clad in backlit translucent glass to help dematerialise their bulky forms & reflect the shopfronts. The new historically interpretive colour scheme and carpet design, with frameless glazed shopfronts and signage revitalises the shopping experience and unique architectural interiors. Together with the major refurbishment work, the building’s safety systems, lighting, lift car refitouts, balustrading and disabled access provisions are upgraded to meet current building code requirements.
Children’s Medical Research Institute
The original Children’s Medical Research Institute (CMRI) building designed by Ancher Mortlock Woolley (now Conrad Gargett) was completed in 1992. The facility is distinctive for its innovative pinwheel configuration of laboratories around a shared central services hub. In 2008 Conrad Gargett was commissioned to redevelop the institute to provide expansion for over 500 people & accommodate its future needs. Stage 1 construction has recently been completed, doubling the CMRI’s research capacity. The new design builds on the cellular arrangement of the existing design with each of stage growing a new cell or laboratory block. Layered over the plan is facade patterning systems evolving from DNA sequencing and a graphic representation of the CMRI logo. An atrium above the previous hub provides a new collaborative focus for the development, to facilitate informal and formal institute functions that include a staff recreation area. The building and its services have been designed to meet and exceed ‘best practice’ sustainability principles to minimise the carbon footprint, energy use and water consumption. These systems will deliver in the order of 20% energy savings compared to conventional ‘business as usual’ building services installations.
St John’s Redevelopment
The St John’s site has frontages to Oxford Street, Regent Street and Renny Lane to the south. The proposal will redevelop the site incorporating a unique square on Oxford Street, to re-engage the community with the significant heritage architecture through the adaptive reuse of the church as retail space and a new kiosk. The kiosk’s open framed structure and outdoor seating area will allow the heritage listed Old Manse and church to be fully visible from Oxford Street whilst creating a vibrant new civic space. The public realm of Oxford Street is complimented by high quality residential apartments delicately woven into the heritage character of the church hall and the New Manse facing Renny Lane. The residential component will consist of 7 new high quality apartments on Renny Lane, 2 town homes inserted into the existing sandstone envelope of the Church Hall and the restoration of the New Manse into a freestanding 3 bedroom federation house. The design concept is innovative and contemporary within the heritage building context. It respects the quality of the original fabric, through a restrained architectural approach in the use of selected materials, the composition of the new elements and scale of the building forms.