Mill Hill Early Education Centre
The Mill Hill Early Education Centre, for Waverley Council, offers child care and an early childhood health centre to the local community. In response to an overwhelming need for childcare, Waverley Council were assisted by $1.65 million Federally funded from the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.
25 Ebely Street Waverly, NSW 2022 Australia
Set in the heart of Bondi Junction, it was initially apparent that a transitional building was required between the high-density commercial district’s urban context and the low-density residential streets opposite.
Roof pitches are angled to maximize northern light and reinforce the connection between two urban settings, while strong horizontal banding defines the different levels. The exclusive use of glass to divide the indoor and outdoor spaces allows surveillance and seamless integration of the playful environment.
The site’s three active frontages directly engage their immediate context. The main entry is set back from the busy street corner and this buffer is continued, separating children’s areas from the public. The north facing landscaped outdoor play area is in continuity with the interior spaces and connects with the park through open fencing. A “childs eye view” was adopted when designing the centre evident in colour, scale, sill heights and spatial experiences, all carefully considered from an infants perspective and ergonomic needs.
The mosaic tiled perimeter wall allows limited visual interaction between the childcare facility and the street, also offering an anti graffiti solution, identifying the building while in itself taking cues from Waverley Councils own graphic logo. The external wall is punctuated by glass blocks, responding to the sensory experience of the children, as it continues internally, leading them into the centre and once inside a playful yet relaxing environment has been created through a joyful suite of materials.
Northern building orientation, along with the effective use of louvers and highlight windows provide a comfortable climate response. Solar Panels, PV Cells and water harvesting aid the environmental performance of the centre. Pergolas with louvers and large overhangs provide passive solar control.