Queen Mary Building

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The Queen Mary Building forms part of the University of Sydney’s masterplan to provide future accommodation for 4,000 students. The project involves the adaptive re-use of an historic nurses’ home into high‐rise community accommodation for 800 students. The original building, designed by Stephenson and Turner, is a good example of late modernism including elements of the ‘International Style’. The austere architecture of the  exterior belies the subtle detailing of the domestic yet functional interior that clearly places the building in a mid‐20th century context.

The refurbished building distributes accommodation from levels 1 to 11 with each floor containing common bathrooms, kitchenettes, lounges and studies. Basement, ground and roof levels contain common areas including a communal kitchen & dining facility, gallery, entertainment lounge, theatrette, gymnasium, laundry and music rooms.  External terraces are located on level 1, level 11 and the roof.

The University of Sydney provided a comprehensive Sustainability Framework tool with which the design team was able to appropriate to meet a strict budget. Although not a formal rating or certification system, the building was designed to meet the criteria related to adaptive re‐use and adopted environmentally sustainable measures.