First impressions are deceptive for landmark UTS Tower
From the Brutalist exterior of UTS’s landmark Tower, it might be easy to believe the inside is dark and devoid of character. In fact, it’s the very opposite.
Did you know that, during a progressive upgrade of the Tower to accommodate a consolidation of UTS’s administrative units, a standard design has been employed to maximise natural light? This has been achieved by locating open workspaces around the perimeter and closed-off spaces such as offices and meeting rooms in the core, wherever possible. Ceiling beams have also been exposed on many floors to maximise ceiling height and the sense of space.
Level 15 fit-out for SAU, showing exposed ceiling and perimeter workstations
The same yet different
While many floors have followed this template, each unit and architect has brought a strikingly different aesthetic to their space. Some of the most notable refurbishments include:
- Levels 11, 12 and 15: Information Technology Division (ITD) and Student Administrative Unit (SAU), designed by award-winning architects LahzNimmo and distinguished by their warm colour scheme with brightly striped glass interior walls.
- Level 21: Institute for Public Policy & Governance, designed by Gardner Wetherill and featuring timber from reclaimed railway sleepers and eye-catching copper cabinetry.
- Level 25: Student Services’ quirky Careers space, designed by Burtenshaw and Scoufis, and notable for its pale blue kitchen and a phone kiosk for students to use for job-hunting calls.
But what of the latest refurbishment for the Australia China Relations Institute (ACRI) on level 18?
Level 18 interior
Freshly completed, this partial floor refurbishment combines a corporate aesthetic, with subtle Chinese influences via acoustic fretwork, a tea-serving table and a selection of books from the China Library on display in reception.
Artist's impression of an ACRI office with tea-serving table
Other features include:
- Large conference room/events space with fold-back doors to a break-out/reception area.
- Meeting room/broadcast studio with a green screen, camera and in-use lights for when live broadcasts are in progress.
- Acoustic panels suspended above staff workstations to provide sound insulation as well as a sense of visual privacy.
- Offices located around the perimeter, with four smaller offices featuring high-level and side-wall glazed partitions to create a feel of openness and connection.
ACRI will move into its new space in late November 2016.