Following an Expression of Interest this past fall, four teams were recently invited to submit design proposals for the redevelopment of the State Library Victoria in Melbourne, Australia. Established in 1854, the iconic Library is one of the state of Victoria's oldest public institutions, providing a vast range of resources and programs to about 1.8 million visitors every year. The redesign, formally called the Vision 2020 Redevelopment Program, aims to re-establish the Library as Victoria State's premier education and cultural institution and to connect with more Victorians.
The international shortlist includes some top-notch architecture and engineering firms who best demonstrated particular expertise in restoring significant heritage buildings of a similar scale and complexity, and are knowledgeable about about the latest innovations in library buildings and major cultural institutions.
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The four shortlisted teams are:
- Architectus/Schmidt Hammer Lassen supported by Andronas Conservation Architects, Irwin Consult, and Steensen Varming Engineers
- Ashton Raggatt McDougall supported by Bryce Raworth Heritage Architects, Bonacci Group, and Norman Disney & Young Engineers
- Conrad Gargett/Lyons supported by Bonacci Group and Norman Disney & Young Engineers
- Hassell supported by Purcell Heritage Architects and AECOM Engineers
The $83.1 million project includes the restoration of Queen’s Hall, the reopening of the Library’s Russell Street entrance, an e-Town Hall that will connect regional public libraries, and new spaces for early learning, digital media, entrepreneurship, and exhibition. Philanthropic partners will help fund the project, and the Victorian Government will contribute a total of $55.4 million over the next five years.
The winning team is expected to be announced in March, and the start of construction is slated for 2017.
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