The Department of Education acquired the Ku-ring-gai UTS university campus in Sydney North with the vision of creating a large educational centre: “Lindfield Learning Village”. This campus consists of an ensemble of connected buildings surrounded by a National Park. The heritage listed 1970’s brutalist buildings will receive 2100 children over 30,000 m2.

To embrace a new educational model focusing on each child’s well-being, Lindfield Learning Village will feature a schools-within-schools model, which allows a large school to be shaped by several smaller “learning communities”. (6 separate schools or Home-bases, from kindergarten to year 12, each will accommodate one class / level, i.e. up to 350 children). The new architectural intervention will be following a set of design rules, in order to create a coherent architectural ensemble, while reading the original fabric easily and differentiating new interventions.

Singularity: use a singular architectural language for new interventions, in order to be easily identifiable.

A playful geometry: in contrast with the existing brutalist architecture, which is an architecture of mass, tridimensional; the new language will be an architecture of surface, dimensional, thin and folded: a playful language with Origami references. A geometry that is easily adaptable to different programs.

A few materials: in contrast with heavy existing materials (concrete & brick), the new interventions will use light sheet materials, metal cladding and stainless-steel netting. These materials are versatile and could be used in many locations; for many purposes, indoor and outdoor.

Outdoor: childcare facade, new fire stairs, handrails and balustrades, shade structures, roof enclosure…

Indoor: cable trays, AC ducts, joinery, handrail and balustrades… even furniture.

A defined palette of colour: to brighten and contrast the existing colour palette, grey and mat, the new will be colorful and glossy; more suitable for children.

Architecture and fit-out that is totally reversible and recyclable. While contrasting with the original fabric, this language is part of the same register. It is sympathetic and complementary to the existing building, contributing to children wellbeing, and strong pastoral care.

Location: Lindfield NSW, Australia 33°53’2,51″S, 151°12’3.56″E
Architects: Lacoste+Stevenson, Design Architect. Designinc, Head Architect. BMC2 Architectural Advisor.
Date: stage 1: completed 2018,                   stages 2 & 3: in progress
Team: Thierry Lacoste, Robert Godfrey, Jacqueline Urford,Tim Garry, Helen Chan, Chun Suh, Yna Yin, Tristan Balogh.
Structural and facade: Birzulis Associates, Michael Crogan, Steve Avasalu, Jonathan Walujono.
ESD / Services: ERBAS: Michael Slatter, Anton Smolin.
Landscape architect: Designinc: Maria Rigoli, Ingrid Cheng.
Photography / images: Lacoste+Stevenson Architects