Methodist Ladies College
356 Stirling Hwy, Claremont, WA
CODA Architecture & Urban Design
Creating a new Junior Year Precinct within the existing Methodist Ladies College campus in Claremont saw PACT manage the refurbishment of two existing facilities (including one of its heritage-listed buildings) while constructing a new facility and carrying out the extensive landscaping of play spaces.
We won the project through a competitive tender process.
- Methodist Ladies College is located on a main intersection off Stirling Highway in close proximity to neighbouring residents. This required close coordination with suppliers – deliveries were restricted to allocated roads to minimise noise and congestion.
- Existing services (water, electrical, fire & communications) were discovered on site that were not shown on the as-constructed drawings. Through coordination with services trades and stakeholders, we coordinated a full services shutdown on a weekend in order to expose and relocate/reroute services.
- An area that was initially designed as a teaching area was later repurposed as an Early Childhood Learning Centre (ECLC). The program was re-sequenced to incorporate design changes with limited design drawings.
- Concrete cantilevered staircase around the lift shaft in Building B: We constructed the staircase in multiple concrete pours to achieve faceted angles in the design. The ground floor mid-landing utilised exposed aggregate concrete, instead of the standard grey mix concrete used in the main stairs.
- Curved anodised bronze panels across the main elevation from Building B to Building C: The panels were all anodised at the Perth Mint at the same time. Due to the time separation between construction of Building B and Building C, panels were stored at Perth Mint during the course of construction.
- A semi-sprung vinyl dance floor was installed by a specialist contractor based in Melbourne. We coordinated site activities to allow three days of unlimited access to the contractor for installation.
Features of development
Completed over a two-year period, all three buildings integrate with a new innovative ‘learning landscapes’ design that creates a seamless flow between the inside and outside of the building, blurring teaching and play spaces.
The art room’s external courtyard has a series of compressed fibre cement framed openings to let both light and airflow into the courtyard area.
All internal walls are light steel framed and lined in plasterboard, inclusive of acoustic insulation to guarantee no noise transfer between the various learning areas of the building.
Building C has a feature floating Modwood deck covering 200m2 of the external concrete substructure’s balcony. The Modwood structure utilised a secret fixed finish and a drainage system hidden underneath. The structure complements the anodised bronze steel panels with a hot dip galvanised finish to the balustrades.
The landscaping across the external areas to all three buildings is extensive and unique for a school playground. Feature elements within the landscaped areas include: a mega chute slide, spinners, rope swings, rope bridge over watercourse, talking tubes, musical pipes, climbing spider tower, interactive water trails, climbing logs, balance logs, cubbies recessed to the embankment and hiding nooks.