CDE Studio 01


Studio leader: Isabel Lasala

High-rise schools... a new architectural type?

The exponential growth that is currently undergoing in Australia's major cities has brought significant changes in urban programs and activities.

Primary and secondary schools don’t escape this situation.

As the key buildings in the urban fabric of most communities, schools are experiencing significant changes, in particular as the population is growing at speed, and the land available is scarce and expensive.

As a way to deal with this new condition, the Australian Government has started to “think about education vertically. This translates into seven vertical schools currently being built, all in the most populated areas of our major cities. This situation presents us with an opportunity to explore new forms of spatial organisation, and propose different formal and spatial configurations that might eventuate into a new type of building.

This studio thus seeks to explore these new design challenges, and provide students with the opportunity to re- think primary and secondary schools.

A key challenge to address is to re-organise a program that normally requires a considerable plan size.

Students will have the opportunity to formulate their own conceptualization of what a contemporary vertical school might be, and in particular challenging the boundaries between interior and exterior space.

The studio also asks students to implement a specific design strategy, based on challenging the disciplinary boundaries that exist between architecture and landscape architecture.

With this, it is expected that students will explore with the untapped relationships that exist between these two apparently different disciplines.

The intention is to offer students with the opportunity to create the singular spatial experiences and atmospheres that can be produced by the ambiguous spatiality that emerges from their combination.

The project’s site will be located in Prahran, at the corner between Malvern Road and Little Chapel St.

The design process will be undertaken through three main methods that complement each other, which include observation, case study methodology, and design exploration. This project has to be represented employing a wide range of different tools of architectural communication, i.e. physical and digital models, drawings, and images, etc.

View the student projects on Miro

Architecture 2021_winter