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Sydney Blythe Award for Educational Architecture 2023

We are honoured to be awarded the Sydney Blythe Award for Educational Architecture at the 2023 Tasmanian Architecture Awards for Holy Rosary Catholic School.

Jury citation:

“Holy Rosary is a delightful calibration of a hard-working primary school environment.

An intuitive masterplan process ran concurrently with overlapping design and construction demands. Every architectural decision seeks to benefit the teacher, the students, the school community, and the site. The variety of internal to external connections act to strengthen teaching and learning possibilities. The persistent agility of the new works continually generates the possibility of engagement with the broader realm of the school and the community.

The experience of the neighbourhood of Claremont is backgrounded by a feeling of deep connection and celebration of the creek, the streetscape, and the hills and mountain beyond. The outcome of years of effort, this humble project is an extraordinary example of Tasmanian architects operating with economy, agility and care.

Built by Maverick Building and designed with Playstreet, Aldanmark and CES. 

Thank you to all our team Shamus Mulcahy, Sophie Bence, Bek Verrier, Hannah Webber, Johnny Mckenzie, Emily Hunt and to Mike Renshaw. 

A shout out to Adam Gibson who worked his magic behind the lens around the chaos of a primary school in full swing!

Cambridge Primary School, Major Redevelopment

The design for the Cambridge Primary School Major Redevelopment responds to the school’s positive culture where all students have a sense of belonging and agency, and where physical activity, outdoor play and being ‘in the bush’ is highly valued.

The project includes a new building, with four GLAs, an extension to the existing kindergarten with an additional learning space, relocation of the library, expansion of the existing canteen, new outdoor covered areas and associated landscaping.

The new built elements improve the experience of the landscape, and connect students directly to the surrounding bush and rivulet.

New and refurbished classrooms open to wide verandas for outdoor undercover learning, and playful elements such as the roof “pops” capture light and sky views while tree-top decks become points to survey the schoolyard and broader landscape.

New built elements extend existing buildings and consolidate existing site patterns. New buildings are brick, gabled and sympathetic to existing typologies. Internally they are warm and light, domestic styled interiors.

The approach to new landscape is to provide a range of different zones with seamless connection to the indoors and to the bush and rivulet.

Preliminary imagery by Bence Mulcahy

Proposed new classrooms for grade 5 + 6

The Friends’ School Revell Sports Centre

The Revell Centre, a state-of-the-art sports facility for the Friends’ School, is the first project resulting from our masterplan for the school (link to masterplan page).

The sports centre, which also includes teaching spaces, staff offices and other amenities, improves site accessibility by connecting with existing buildings at multiple levels using lifts and bridge walkways.

Developing a new sports facility also allows the school to convert the former WN Oats gym, located at the heart of the school’s campus, into flexible, contemporary teaching spaces (link to Oats page).

Our work for Friends’ is guided by the school’s distinctive ethos and desire to create outstanding facilities that benefit the whole school community. The Revell Sports Centre and redevelopment of the WN Oats Centre contribute to this goal by significantly improving equity of access at the school. 

Images by CUUB Studio

Holy Rosary Learning Spaces and Canteen

Holy Rosary Catholic School, established in 1961, values its strong connections with the local community and vibrant school culture. 

An assessment of the school identified the need for larger, contemporary learning spaces, improved student amenities and flexible spaces for social and community programs.  

Our additions stay true to the school’s existing low-level, red-brick buildings with domestic-scale awnings and decks, and their location reinforces the importance of the school’s central courtyard.  The new transparent shared spaces, amenities pods and pop-up sun collectors are a playful addition to the campus.

Photos Adam Gibson

Contemporary learning spaces

Fahan Masterplan

Bence Mulcahy is undertaking a masterplan for Fahan School to guide their building program.

Fahan, a girls’ school with students from kindergarten to year 12, is situated on a leafy and historic campus in Sandy Bay and enjoys beautiful views of the River Derwent. 

In response to our consultation with students, and the school’s commitment to put the outdoors at the heart of education, our campus planning prioritises the landscape setting and ‘long view’ to the river.

A new terraced landscape “green heart” in the centre of the campus connects the whole school and is a place for gathering, outdoor learning and active play. New buildings capture the ‘long view’, and alterations to existing teaching spaces provide breakout spaces and connections to the outdoors. 

Deep consultation with students was a highlight of our work with Fahan. The high value of the gardens came through universally to become the focus of the masterplan. 

Images by Bence Mulcahy and Fahan School

Physical model of Fahan School Campus by Bence Mulcahy

Consultation workshop with primary school students Sophie and Bek in one of the many consultation workshops with the students Consultation workshop with senior girls



Dover District School Year 11/12 Redevelopment

2022 Tasmanian Architecture Awards Commendation for Educational Architecture

Dover, located 81 km south of Hobart, is Australia’s most southern town.

The redevelopment of the Dover School campus to accommodate a new year 11 and 12 facility helps remove barriers to education for this remote community with a population of 486.

The school’s original 1950s hall was extended and linked to a new building that overlooks the town and port, connecting students to the dramatic landscape and their community.

The contemporary teaching space now caters for the school’s primary and secondary students, as well as adult learners and community events.

The new building continues the school’s existing gable and skillion roofs, with the folding roof planes outlining the three teaching spaces within.

Carbon-neutral Tasmanian red bricks were selected to be in keeping with the existing material palette and from a desire to use local materials.

Photos by Adam Gibson

Generous classroom with large view overlooking the school grounds and Dover beyond

Main entry and breakout space