Ivanhoe East Primary School Space Centre
The SPACE Centre facilitates an enhanced interaction between the school and broader public. This is achieved through the redevelopment of the existing gymnasium and the design of a new integrated structure housing a performing arts centre, canteen, after-hours care, music classrooms, and community facilities.
Chester & Chester Pty Ltd Architects
35 Warncliffe Road, East Ivanhoe VIC 3079
The SPACE Centre, designed by Chester and Chester Architects, is an exceptional example of a learning environment that is truly integrated with the community. The project involved the redevelopment of an existing 1960’s era gymnasium. The challenges encountered during the design process included securing adequate funding, the integration of multiple functions typologies as well as the need to address the duality of a building with both a school and a community interface. Chester and Chester Architects lobbied local and Federal politicians and were instrumental in assisting to secure a Commonwealth grant of $1 million for the project under the Local Schools Working Together initiative. They developed an extremely efficient program that incorporated all of these functions via the application flexible and adaptable design strategies such as dividable spaces, retractable seating and cleverly planned adjacencies. The public face of the building, addresses the street and its entrance is clearly defined by the junction of linear and fractured forms created by the rotated floor plate. The school accesses the building from within the school campus via a lower courtyard level that is sheltered by a cantilevered hood overhang providing an intimate and functional point of congregation. Architecturally, the building has made a significant and positive impact on the school campus. It references the materiality of the existing buildings via the use of red brick and corrugated colourbond whilst introducing contemporary elements such as sections of coloured render and glazed brick. The internal environment features voluminous, light-filled spaces and ample fresh air via the use of cross ventilation. It is both energy efficient and and cost effective to run due to the use of solar-passive orientation, the high degree of natural light penetration and the use of natural ventilation and durable, low maintenance materials. The SPACE Centre has not only provided the opportunity to expand the school curriculum, it has provided the surrounding community with a facility that meets many of its requirements. Furthermore, the students of Ivanhoe Primary School continue to benefit from the opportunities presented by this increased level of community engagement.