Location Montrose, VIC
Project Completion 2020
Project Size 1130m2
Photography Trevor Mein
Project Description This new gymnasium for Montrose Primary School offers a much-loved primary school in the foothills of the Dandenong Ranges an exceptional new facility. A confident new street identity, fork-to-fork kitchen garden program, unisex facilities and flexible learning environments are other project dividends. The facility is also designated a bushfire shelter.
Our core idea was to respond to the character of the Dandenong foothills. We eschewed a typical skillion roof for an asymmetrical ‘broken back’ ridge, running in the short direction to reference the billowing landscape. The intense ever-changing hues of the ranges are reflected in the upper cladding.
The gymnasium features a full competition grade basketball court with spectator seating, storage and change rooms. A lower level extension to the south includes an office and facilities exceeding the original brief that were achieved within budget and timeframes, including colourful new unisex bathrooms, a prized new facility for the school.
An accessible, child friendly but commercial-grade kitchen hosts the school’s new kitchen learning program and school kiosk. We utilised the gym’s entry foyer as a flexible breakout space for communal dining and informal learning. Hugging this length of the building, the generous new veranda forecourt is both public/private interface, with graceful timber screen enclosing the criss-cross shaded play and eating area.
Finalist, 2021 Victorian School Design Awards, Best School Project – Below $5M
“Our new gymnasium is an interactive learning environment for our school that stimulates a growing child’s mind and body. The gymnasium offers a platform for teachers to collaborate for professional learning and a place where all students and staff, as well as the wider community, can meet for a wide variety of events in state-of-the-art facilities.”
– Glenn Storr, Assistant Principal, Montrose Primary School