The new Monash Business School is a unique education facility. Designed exclusively for post-graduate and executive students, the project transcends the traditional stereotype of cellular learning and delivers an environment which bridges the gap between executive level education and a corporate environment.
Working within an existing speculative 90s style office building, NH architecture approached the design with an attitude of increasing connectivity and transparency, alongside the “Next Generation” teaching methodology and the “Better Teaching, Better Learning” agenda. The existing segregated office floor plates were transformed with the introduction of two interconnecting stairs. One within the existing building and the other in the new adjoining Pavilion housing a 160 seat auditorium.
The distinct gold zinc cladding of the Pavilion is visible from Dandenong Road, Caulfield Racecourse and Caulfield train station. It acts as a landmark element for both the faculty and the broader University community.
The striking Adeka panelling creates depth and textural detail. The fish scale surface performs as an aesthetic point of interest, as well as an effective interlocking protective skin, installed with a ventilated air space.
The richness of the gold is as much a striking emblem in darkness as it is during the day. The reflective quality of the jewel-like cladding creates an elevated object in the cityscape. Consequently, compelling from both campus and the freeway.
The upper-level location of the redevelopment posed a challenge in terms of the transportation of construction materials. Therefore, the cross-laminated timber flatpack provided an effective, light weight alternative to concrete slabs.
The arrival level is designed with the flexibility to transform from the traditional model of a corporate reception, to a more informal meet and greet function space, in line with the expectations of corporate industry leaders. This flexibility can expand or contract using the adjoining Pavillion, Reception, Boardroom, Gallery and the Staff and Student Lounge. Access to an outdoor terrace further encourages the multi-use of the venue.
Transparency and connection is maintained throughout by the high performing, acoustic, glazed partitions. These are decorated with patterns drawn from the iconic graphic images on the Australian currency.
The final finish of the pine panels offer light and warmth to the interior. The experimental use of timber as a tilt-slab substitute also mirrors the University’s desire to encourage lateral thinking and the use of sustainable materials.
Monash University is now among the 1% of business schools in the world to have achieved ‘triple crown’ accreditation, by the three major global business school accreditation bodies AACSB, EQUIS and AMBBA and the only Group of Eight Australian University to have done so.