Warrnambool Campus Building by Lyons


South West TAFE by Lyons

Australian firm Lyons’ new campus building for a college in Warrnambool, Australia, has a glazed façade made up of hexagonal apertures tilted down towards the street.

South West TAFE by Lyons

The new building acts as a threshold between the town and private campus, and will house accommodation, offices, lecture theatres and meeting rooms.

South West TAFE by Lyons

The glazed apertures have a steel structure finished with zinc, and provide solar shading and natural ventilation.

South West TAFE by Lyons

The main entrance is through a glazed wall underneath the apertures.

South West TAFE by Lyons

To the rear of building is an enclosed courtyard.

South West TAFE by Lyons

The college, near Victoria, is one of five across Australia that form South West TAFE, a further education institution.

South West TAFE by Lyons

Here's some more from the architect:

This project is the third stage in the redevelopment of South West TAFE’s Warrnambool Campus, and meditates between the civic space of the town, and the private interior space of the campus.

South West TAFE by Lyons

The building is approximately 2,870sqm of floor space, over three levels, and accommodates a diverse brief including; campus student services on the ground level, the campus administration and directorate on the first floor, and a conference centre and other general learning spaces on the third or upper level.

South West TAFE by Lyons

The project required a permit from the Heritage Council of Victoria, due to its adjacency to the heritage listed Warrnambool Court House.

South West TAFE by Lyons

The principal entry façade to Timor Street faces due north, and its context and orientation suggested a couple of key design strategies.

South West TAFE by Lyons

Firstly the primary circulation of the building is located on the street, as an extension of the civic space – like the footpath repeated across three levels. This is combined with the concept of the self shading wall, accommodating the parameters for environmental performance of both shading and natural ventilation; and allows the street façade to be both shaded and transparent, making the circulation visible onto the street.

South West TAFE by Lyons

To achieve these objectives materials were sourced for the shading geometries. The profile of expanded metal was expanded to a gigantic scale – one that works with the street. The finished profile is clad in zinc, in order to negotiate the valleys and peaks of the geometry.

South West TAFE by Lyons

At an urban design scale, the rhythm of the geometry can be seen to stitch up the street and the two adjacent heritage buildings.

South West TAFE by Lyons

At the scale of the building, the internal circulation stairs are co-ordinated to the geometry of the façade, further amplifying the sensation of connecting the circulation with the street.

South West TAFE by Lyons

Click above for larger image

The building is entered via a glazed wall formed underneath the major circulation stair, and leads to the student service centre, and then continues through to the rear campus courtyard space.

South West TAFE by Lyons

Click above for larger image

From the foyer, the stairs rise up through the street wall to a series of student spaces, where students self organize into informally learning activities.

South West TAFE by Lyons

Click above for larger image

The interior courtyard space, to which this project provides half the boundary, (previous redevelopments provide the other half), is designed as a quiet space, with primarily solid walls in metal cladding, contains figurative windows which echo the generating geometry to the north.

South West TAFE by Lyons

Click above for larger image

The building contains core sustainability practices. These include the design concept of the northern façade, the use of natural ventilation and mixed mode for the circulation spaces and storm water harvested off the roof and landscape works for use in irrigation across the campus.

See also:


Menzies Research Building
by Lyons
Lyon Housemuseum
by Lyons Architects
Mornington nursing home
by Lyons Architects

Posted on Tuesday July 20th 2010 at 2:29 pm by Joe Mills. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Very nice! Not sure on the colour interior architecture of the building though.

  • ohno!

    Will Alsop gone angular with all of the poor detailing and appalling materials to boot! yaaaaaaaaaaaaaay. Someone actually spent money on this?

  • That is truly disorienting.

  • edward

    Looks overwhelming.

  • Martin

    As seen on Wipeout anulpha pass track..

  • kaptain krunch

    It’s going to age badly (already looks like something horrendous from the 6ties or 7ties). But it’ll be an absolute classic. Really like it.

  • abdulqadirabas

    I really feel like living in a bee colony.
    Love the articulation of the aperture.

  • NØRD


  • grapes

    if life is as shallow as this facade then Im not too sure i want to live anymore

  • Wow, what a very unusual and amazing structure. It almost gives me the sense of an open beehive.

  • floyd landis

    People love walking by buildings that feel like they are falling over.

  • Lei Ning

    this fassade is so poor! does is have anything to do with the interior? compare it with kengo kumas new opera house in . it really follows the concept of a bee’s house from the core (the actual music hall) to the outside skin.
    this is never becoming a classic, it is something that is going to be laughed and cryed about very soon

  • martin

    parece un edificio de chile despues del terremoto

  • SI

    It is too much. Makes me dizzy. It is not beautiful at all to me.

  • felix

    “mixed mode for the circulation spaces ” what does this mean?

    how ghastly. it’s like working inside a render.

    someone needs to explain to these guys about interiors and how materials can have textures

    the interior program looks like a mess

    that façade section is so pointless.

  • Vedasri Kada

    overwhelming yes but quirky….the thought does count

  • Mike

    This is how Australia avoided recession. By the government pumping millions into the education sector to splurge on expensive, unnecessary architecture.

    Lyons as usual makes me want to vomit.

  • Andy

    Maybe they could have spent less money on the façade and instead paid somebody to do a reflected floor plan in the meeting space? *gags*

  • bodkin

    i wouldn’t want to be the fool that has to clean the windows on the inside. exactly how is that achieved? here in the uk we thankfully have health and safety laws that make stupid facades like this unbuildable

  • bill

    wow, simply the ugliest building I have EVER seen! The tradegy of sticking too close to a reductive diagram.