Ivan McDonald Architects P/L
A heritage conservation practice specialising in the conservation of heritage buildings; refurbishment and sympathetic adaptation of government, commercial and residential buildings; and with a special interest in urban conservation. The practice provides personal attention to every project and is able to combine a range of skills to offer all clients a comprehensive and cohesive service. Special skills include heritage assessment of individual buildings and precincts, historic townscape assessment, building conservation and urban design.
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St Mary’s Convent
First established in the late 1850s, the former 1884 Sisters of Mercy convent was vacated in the 1990s and was in a state of poor repair which limited its access and use. Located in the heart of the St Mary’s College campus, the building has been adapted to accommodate the college’s administration functions. A key aspect of the project was the installation of a new lift and exit stairs to allow equitable access and to satisfy fire safety requirements for upper floors. Many of the extensive original open verandas had been closed and were in poor condition. The project re-opened and reconstructed all of the original verandas. Throughout the process, the conservation actions were informed by a 2003 conservation management plan prepared by Buchanan Architects. This was aided by further historical research and extensive physical investigation prior to project documentation.