Lisa-Maree Carrigan Director
Lisa-Maree is Director of Architecture & Urban Design globally at GroupGSA. She leads engagement of teams and clients through design collaboration and strategic direction
For students living on-campus, student accommodation is where the strata of much of their social lives plays out. Connections are made, learning is amplified, collective curiosity is nurtured, and the lives of residents intermingle with campus and broader community activity. An environment of support, comfort and inspiration can make all the difference the student journey.
Our vision for the new student residences at the University of Wollongong is to deliver a considered, contemporary solution—in synergy with the strengths and qualities of the campus, where learning and social opportunities are extended into the new residences. Stylish and spacious layouts defy traditional boxy student accommodation and invigorate a sense of vitality and social connection.
The 800-bed Kooloobong accommodation is planned over three buildings, 73 (East building), 74 (middle) and 75 (West building). The buildings overlook two large, landscaped courtyards, naturally enclosing and defining the outdoor space as private. The main carparks are to the east and west of the three buildings with a carpark and small drop off area adjacent to the middle building, where a ground floor reception welcomes residents and visitors alike.
The 254-bed Northfields postgraduate building provides delineation to a central courtyard with links directly to the communal spaces inside. The main wing of the building runs parallel to Northfields Avenue creating a separation from the busy avenue. By maximising the height envelope, most accommodation has north, east or west-facing aspects to optmise leverage of natural light and heating in winter.
By taking advantage of the slope on the site, level access is provided to the prominent main entrance off Northfields Avenue. Entering the secure lower ground floor, students are warmly greeted by a reception area and can access mailboxes, bicycle store and a waste room.
Northfields is carefully sited sympathetically with the future childcare site to the Southwest. It also allows for future pedestrian links and solar access to the site, enabling ongoing change to the campus.