The St. Columba’s School Hall project restored the dignity and majesty of a socially significant 1917 school building, and re-established the complex’s significance and identity at the revitalised social heart of the campus. The project provides an integrated multi-functional educational and community precinct, supporting the school’s expanding functional needs. The building’s original open-verandah system formed the basis for generating a formal built form to integrate all spaces through a series of access/view corridors and breezeways. There is clear architectural legibility of the transition from the heritage to the contemporary building form. Historical research and detailing reinforced the value of heritage as part of the ongoing educational process.
Sight lines from neighbouring hillsides to the original roof-line, re-proclaim educational buildings as a significant contributor to the life of a community. The hall engages with the precinct through the rationalisation and connectivity of multiple levels of play areas and circulation links. Programme resolution through a regimented building structural grid, combined with the open-verandah systems, provides opportunities for alternative functional uses as the pedagogy evolves for different modes and different users. Sustainability through reuse and adaptation of the original hall extends its functional and materials lifecycle, securing historic built form for future generations.
Awarded the 2012 National Trust of Queensland Heritage Award – Silver, for Adaptive Re-use.