The Monte Sant' Angelo Mercy College is located within a complex campus of heritage buildings in the built up area of North Sydney. BHA worked with the college to extend and refurbish the existing heritage listed Oregan building to create their new performing arts centre.
The college wanted to provide state of the art facilities for their performing arts students by developing a new arts and cultural centre. The primary objective was to create an active new learning centre for the arts in which performance could also be undertaken. The project includes: a 300 seat drama theatre, large ensemble classroom, 4 music and drama classrooms, 3 ensemble classrooms, 8 music studios and support spaces. As all of these facilities were required to be located within a very compact area of the campus surrounded by heritage buildings BHA used the topography of the site to develop a design which located the theatre its support spaces and ensemble classroom below ground. A new building forms an extension to a heritage building and houses classrooms, studios and main building foyer.
This new building forms a new edge connecting the existing buildings to create a new green courtyard for the campus and a new formal entry to the chapel.
As principal design consultant BHA co-ordinated the design and documentation of the full design team, including development of detailed fire engineering report, specialist acoustic, heritage and theatre consultants inputs. To achieve the required building compliance of the upgraded building (which changed use and type of construction). We were required to work closely with the BCA Consultant and fire engineer to develop a detailed compliance and implementation strategy. This strategy included both DTS and fire engineered solutions, which allowed both compliance to meet and for existing heritage features to be maintained and refurbished.
The strategy included the installation of fire sprinklers throughout the existing building to achieve fire separation and required fire ratings. Through this and other similar projects our team understand the detailed issues of introducing and reticulating such services through existing building fabric.
Detailed work was also undertaken to overcome egress compliance within existing heritage building to avoid damaging important heritage features of the building.