Inspired by the London Metropolitan University, Flinders University new School of Biological Sciences – Biological Discovery Centre located on the south-western side of the southern ridge of their main Bedford Park campus is a 3 storey, 2,000m2 specialist learning space that houses 5 laboratories split over the 3 levels.
Mossop Construction + Interiors were engaged to undertake the construction of the open plan building featuring flexible spaces, super laboratories that caters for 240 students, equipped with mobile cameras and audio visual equipment to communicate and relay live and pre-recorded lessons, allowing lecturers to move away from fixed lecterns and roam amongst the students. Innovative features of the building includes the level 3 open roof deck and view room that adjoins the 3 storey bird aviary and biological ecosystem that wraps the northern facade of the building and interlinks with the external staircase that services both this building and the adjoining plaza at a split level.
Situated in a previously excavated area that was being used as a dump and storage compound the site posed many challenges, a difficult sloping rocky site with ground works starting at the peak of winter, various latent conditions were struck early during the works. This required the diversion of undocumented deep storm water lines and incorrectly installed fire mains that fell within the building footprint. These challenges put the project program under immense pressure in addition to the universities fixed practical completion date that was tied to the delivery of a new curriculum within the completed facility. With rescheduling of the critical activities and a re-sequenced building methodology we were able to mitigate lost time and achieved Practical Completion ahead of contract.