Monash University Student Housing, Melbourne

Monash Student Housing Melbourne, Education Building Victoria, Architect, Design

Monash University Student Housing

Melbourne Higher Education Building design by BVN Architecture

21 Mar 2012

Monash Student Housing Before Awards Jury

Location: Melbourne, Australia

Architect: BVN Architecture


A nominee in this year’s Institute of Architects Awards that will be presented to the jury on Saturday 24 March is the Monash Student Housing that sets a new standard of student housing.

BVN Principal, Ninotschka Titchkosky will explain to the jury how the new housing at Monash responds to the need for higher end facilities for students ‘this has been done by moving away from dormitory accommodation, and providing self contained bedroom/study space,’ she said. She pointed out that, ‘this is the first University project to be completed under the National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS), which was established as part of the nation building fund formed in response to the Global Financial Crisis.’

Monash University Student Housing Monash Student Housing Monash University Housing Monash Housing
images : John Gollings

‘In order to fulfill the NRAS requirements residential units need to rent out at 20% below market rate.’

The two major challenges were the sensitive treatment of the building on the site and to create spaces that promoted collegiality and helped to break down the feelings of isolation experienced by many students living away from home.

According to Ms Titchkosky this was addressed by providing two buildings that formed a uniting courtyard and an above average quota of communal spaces, every 30 students have their own common room with kitchen facilities and in addition there are large common rooms in a double height space that creates a feeling of exceptional spaciousness and also provides high levels of visibility and transparency.

‘We kept the design focussed on the experience of the residents, rather than just the pragmatic fulfillment of the spatial brief,’ said Ms Titchkosky.

Monash University Student Housing Monash Student Housing Monash University Housing Monash Housing
images : John Gollings

This was further enhanced by careful design of the studios including unimpeded views through a full height window on the external wall, this together with a small kitchen, ensuite bathroom and built in furniture gives the rooms the quality of a hotel room.

The housing is built in two blocks with one block bordering the bush-land and the other overlooking the playing fields with both facing each other across a central courtyard.

Another design decision driven by the desire to reduce the visual impact of the building was the articulated façade that together with the timber detailing produces a level of movement and interest across what could have been a monotonous elevation. In particular, the use of timber was chosen for its appropriateness given the landscape setting.

There are a number of environmental inclusions, from the roof to the ground where the landscape has been designed to reduce run-off through selection of surface materials and appropriate planting. Nearly all the roof is being used, there is 2,000 square metres of solar panel, one of the largest residential solar installations in Australia, in addition there are services that support fans for each apartment.

All roof rainwater is collected and stored in a 100,000 litre tank and grey water from baths, showers and kitchen sinks is also collected and cleaned and stored and goes back for toilet flushing and irrigation.

Monash University Building Monash Student Building
images : John Gollings

Monash University Student Housing Melbourne images / information from BVN Architecture

BVN Architecture

Monash University (or simply Monash) is a public university based in Melbourne, Victoria. It was founded in 1958 and is the second oldest university in the state.

Location: Monash University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

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