Ridge View Secondary School, Parry and Rosenthal Architects

The first stage of Ridge View Secondary College comprises a new technology and enterprise building, a general learning and science block, a gymnasium, an information resource centre, a cafeteria, and an administration and student services building. The project was completed on schedule at the end of 2018.

To achieve economy, efficiency and sustainability, the buildings were designed to be modular, rectilinear and oriented so as to maximise passive solar design and natural ventilation. Self-finished, robust and cost efficient materials were selected and detailed to maximise the life of the buildings and minimise ongoing maintenance.

During the design and documentation phases, Parry and Rosenthal worked closely with the structural engineer to achieve an efficient and economical structural system to both simplify manufacture and enable ease of construction on site. Structural and architectural detailing was carefully coordinated to ensure that junctions between materials were seamless and well resolved.

Materials were selected to be robust and self-finished, including steel reinforced face concrete blockwork, natural anodised aluminium and exposed natural galvanised steel finishes throughout, creating a consistent and cost effective aesthetic.

Parry and Rosenthal Architects worked closely with the Department of Education, Building Management and Works and the quantity surveyor to achieve critical cost benchmarks without compromising the quality of the design. At each stage, the cost per square metre estimates came in well below benchmarks which were set at a very modest figure and were considerably lower than previous DoE jobs. The accepted tender was 15% below the pre tender estimate and there were very few variations during construction. Despite the economic drivers, the project achieves excellence in design and key educational imperatives as set by the Department of Education.

This project was the recipient of the Best Large Project Award at the 2018 Australian Steel Institute Excellence Awards.