Canberra architects build their way to national awards

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Monaro Mall project, Universal Design Studio and Mather Architecture.

THE revamped Monaro Mall at the Canberra Centre was one of only three Canberra buildings awarded at the Australian Institute of Architects’ National Architecture Awards in Melbourne last night (November 1). 

Designed by Universal Design Studio and Mather Architecture, the Monaro Mall project involved “peeling back the layers of change to rediscover, celebrate and enhance one of Australia’s early state-of-the-art shopping centres”.

“Synergy” by BVN, which houses the CSIRO at Black Mountain, won a National Award for Sustainable Architecture for its naturally ventilated scientific design, with the jury noting its synergy with the surrounding Australian landscape.

AFP Forensics and Data Centre. Photography by Christopher Frederick Jones

The new Australian Federal Police Forensics and Data Centre by HASSELL received a national commendation for commercial architecture, for its radical approach in bringing many of the AFPs specialist experts into one workplace.

Jury chair and immediate past president Richard Kirk said the National Awards provided an opportunity to reflect on how Australia’s diverse landscapes, urban environments and economic conditions influence and inform architecture.


The top interstate and international designs for 2018 included:

Commercial Architecture:

Barwon Water by GHDWoodhead (VIC) was awarded the Harry Seidler Award.

Educational Architecture:

The Daryl Jackson Award went to the New Academic Street, at RMIT University by Lyons with NMBW.

The Enduring Architecture National Award was for the Townsville Courts of Law – Edmund Sheppard Building by Hall, Phillips and Wilson Architects Pty Ltd (QLD).

International Architecture:

The Jørn Utzon Award for Australian Embassy Bangkok by BVN (Thailand).

Australian Award:

School-in-a-Box by Stephen Collier Architects (PNG).

Public Architecture:

The Sir Zelman Cowen Award for Bendigo Hospital by Silver Thomas Hanley with Bates Smart (VIC).

Small Project Architecture:

The Nicholas Murcutt Award for krakani lumi by Taylor and Hinds Architects with the Aboriginal Land Council of Tasmania (TAS).

Urban Design:

The Walter Burley Griffin Award for the Darling Harbour Transformation by HASSELL/HASSELL + Populous (NSW).

People’s Choice Award Winner:

Cabbage Tree House by Peter Stutchbury Architecture (NSW)

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Helen Musa
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