South Australia resumes Face to Face events - Kildare College Site Visit

Published: Sunday 20 September 2020

South Australia’s program of face to face events for 2020 is at last underway.

On September 15 Chapter members and guests were finally able appreciate one of the projects recognised in the 2019 Chapter awards when they visited the new Brigidine Centre at Kildare College in Adelaide’s north east. Despite COVID restrictions, the event was attended by almost 60, with social distanced seating provided for the presentations. These commenced with a stunning dance performance by three students in the main hall, and included an enthusiastic talk from the Principal Tina Neate outlining the benefits of the new facility which have included a significant boost in school enrolments.

Representatives from Archi-Ed were invited to present their program, encouraging architects to educate children about design and architecture in a curriculum-based format.

Designed by Walter Brooke and combining a gym multipurpose space, dance studio, and music suite, the project demonstrates how a well designed and sited addition, constructed at a very modest cost, can transform the life and the public face of a school. Kildare is a 7-12 Catholic school for girls established in the 1960s by the Brigidine Order in the then outer suburbs of Adelaide. The new facility has greatly enhanced the ability for the school to deliver its focus programs on dance, music, health and physical education as well as hosting whole of school events.

Of particular note is the care taken to incorporate high quality acoustics throughout the facility. This allows for concurrent use for dance, music and sport alongside more noise sensitive activities without disruption from student movement.

The light interior is complemented by external façade treatments using articulated precast concrete and metal screening. The building is visible from surrounding residential development on all sides, but the articulated exterior reduces the impact of the building’s scale on its surroundings as well as making use of adjacent areas for outdoor learning.

More events are planned for 2020 as Chapter activity builds after the COVID hiatus.

Thanks to sponsors Gerflor and Woods Furniture for their support.

Andrew Gehling

Images Photographer Sam Noonan - Kildare College & Sophie Newland (event)