Kangan Institute, Automotive Centre of Excellence, Stage 2

Kangan Institute, Automotive Centre of Excellence is a state of the art automotive training facility located in Melbourne’s Docklands. As a powerful contribution to contemporary tertiary education and a showcase to the automotive industry, this building represents an important contribution to the city of Melbourne.

Project Details

Gray Puksand

1 Batmans Hill Drive, Docklands, Melbourne VIC 3008

Mark Freeman


John Gollings

Project Overview

Successful educational buildings are about people embracing them. In this project we strived to compose a variety elements as a departure to the somewhat expected notion of a homogeneous skin. This was to humanize the built form by providing good amenity through design. All facades respond passively to environmental conditions, simultaneously allowing controlled daylight into the building whilst maintaining a sense of transparency and permeability. Along with a green roof that assists environmental performance, the project was awarded a 5 Star rating by the GBCA, this assessment acknowledges the designs performance in the reduction of environmental impact from operation, reduction in water usage, comprehensive waste management and IEQ. The facility will be a showcase to the automotive industry. Educationally the building replaces the draconian notion of the dirty workshop with the respected and valued offer of professional skills training, technology and innovation. It explores a didactic interpretation of the automotive industry, contemporary learning and environmental sustainability. The client had an acute understanding of what students and industry were looking for in contemporary automotive training. The desire to establish a 'future' environment informed us that workshop-based training needed to be transformed into a student centred collaborative learning environment, more akin to a collection of laboratories and ICT rich learning resource centres. Research and the aspirational clarity of the client user group informed detailed aspects of the design and resulted in the provision of new spaces not evident in the default area schedules. Analysis of spatial capacities and utilisation of data supported strategies for departments to share generalist spaces and minimise reliance on specialist areas. Found Space solutions provided bonus areas to the facility within the tight restriction of the building envelope planning requirements. Extensive master planning studies and consideration to urban design has resulted in a facility that integrates campus and context. A 'fine grain' at ground level has been achieved by creating an inviting pedestrian journey as a variety of spaces and experiences. Detailed landscaping provides character to an emerging circulation route. The design aims to contribute to the built environment by providing a memorable place, enriching the experience of users and community.

This page last updated: Monday 10 September 2012