Modular Building Institute

Fairfield Primary School

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Main Category:
Modular Building Design
Fleetwood Building Solutions
Melbourne, Victoria
Building Use:
Primary School Building
Gross Size of Project:
733 Square Meters
Days to complete:

Award Criteria

  1. Architectural Excellence
    An architectural centrepiece for the school, the dedicated Years 5 & 6 learning communities are housed in a contemporary 2-storey building that pushes the boundaries of perception around design for modular construction. The building replaces an existing “permanent” facility that had reached its end of life. Delivering resilience through design, the project maximised the value proposition of the new building through a collaborative process. Structural and spatial solutions will enable a cost-effective refurbishment of the first-floor space from contemporary learning environments to a library and ERC “hub”, allowing this modular building to meet the changing future needs of a growing and vibrant school. Constructed off site in 16 modules (733 sqm), which were then separately transported to site and installed, the project delivers extensive integrated outdoor learning spaces and decking areas linking learning areas with new social settings that support further learning opportunities.
  2. Technical Innovation & Sustainability
    Maximising the established benefits of offsite construction, time, quality and cost, the project explored further opportunities to leverage other construction industry practises, resulting in a “hybrid” approach for the precast lift core. The deliberate evaluation of construction and factory build tolerances ensured a seamless delivery and installation process. The first floor of the building has been innovatively designed for both the current general learning environments and a potential future use as a library and education resource centre, allowing the cost-effective refurbishment of the first floor, extending the building’s useful life. This enhanced the project’s sustainability credentials beyond current best practice energy and operating cost control measures e.g. the use of prefinished panel cladding which reduces ongoing school maintenance, eliminating the safety risks associated with working at heights during the project life.
  3. Cost Effectiveness
    The catalyst for the project’s procurement through offsite construction was borne out of the inability for the project to be cost effectively delivered through traditional insitu construction. Working with a significant government agency, the project validated the pilot demonstration of the high-quality design and built form outcomes that can be achieved through prefabrication and modular construction. The adoption of a mass-customisation strategy yielded a cost-effective manufacturing platform approach, tailored to the project brief. The outcome is an architecture without compromise that delivers a high calibre spatial experience which is fit for purpose. Efficiencies in the supply chain can be harnessed through this approach, as well as maximising the use of local materials, certainty and control over supply and material provenance.
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