Montessori International College Library, Sippy Downs (2010)
2011 Queensland Architecture Awards, Sunshine Coast Regional Commendation
2011 Queensland Architecture Awards, Sustainable Architecture State Commendation
2012 Sunshine Coast Regional Council Living Smart Glossies – Resource Saver Award
Montessori pedagogy requires place to be a cultural resource for human development and learning. Therefore the library building aims to show students how it is put together with the authentic expression of materials and structure – revealing the “skin and bones” of the architecture and contemporary building practices/technology.
This aim worked hand in glove with the programmatic need for future disassembly of the building when the College relocates to its future campus. A steel structural frame and modular plywood wall and floor panels provides the generating principle for organising the library into two spaces - a small library pavilion housing the most valuable resources and a larger learning commons in the form of a luminous verandah.
The library fits comfortably in a highly constrained site amongst trees and built infrastructure. The shimmering zincalume cladding on a simple box with skillion roof recalls memories of the local cane shed whilst at the same time establishes a contrasting image of evolution and change for the College. The library verandah’s polycarbonate screens open to visually connect to the surrounding landscape and informal gathering area and like sails can be operated to capture breezes. The small library pavilion offers a generous volume with southern clerestorey capturing daylight and expansive sky views.
Builder: Altum Constructions
Structural Engineer: TOD Consulting
Hydraulic Engineer: Burnett Lynch MRP
Quantity Surveyor: Graham Lukins