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Bunbury Anglican Diocesan Office Building, Corner of Oakley and Cross Street Building Streetscape
Bunbury Anglican Diocesan Office Building, Corner of Oakley and Cross Street Building Streetscape

The New Anglican Diocesan Centre
Bunbury

The obstacles

Staff were still operating in the building that was supposed to be demolished which posed potential disruption and comfort issues during construction.

 

Inability to find an architect that truly understood and listened to the clients’ wishes of creating a more traditional aesthetic that complimented the architecture of the area.

A new location was needed for the Op-Shop. 

The old building was universally inaccessible and not user friendly for elderly. 

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Bunbury Anglican Diocesan Office Building – Curved wall to the Bishop’s Office (from outside)
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The Vision

A common feature for this particular area in Bunbury is the repurposing of character properties into premium commercial offices. An important aspect of architectural design for this particular property was to maintain the warmth and homeliness of a character residence but as a modern office building.

The original brief from the client was to demolish the existing office and rear community Walker Hall building to allow for a totally new office building, however this was retained, and the new build relocated to its deemed, superior location on the corner of Oakley and Cross Street.

The client’s amended brief expressed the following desires:

The building is to compliment and draw upon a variety of local decorative features in the surrounding area, specifically the St. Boniface Cathedral on the opposite side.

 

The building must impress a friendly, modest and accessible structure with modern office convenience.

Staff and visitor comfort are essential requirements which the prior office lacked.

Bunbury Anglican Diocesan Office Building – Oakley Street Building Streetscape

Alice's story

From the age of 10, Alice was fascinated by architecture. Despite her immigrant parents being concerned architecture was a male dominated industry, and even suggesting she become a lawyer or politician, her mind was made. Having grandparents that participated in the Warsaw Uprising in Nazi occupied Poland and surviving not one but three concentration camps, hard-work and tenacity is in her blood, and she wasn’t going to let a matter of gender stop her from pursuing her dream.

 

Alice studied architecture in Perth and Milan, graduating with a Bachelor of Environmental Design followed by a Master of Architecture with Honours at the University of Western Australia. Her educational experience gave her a foundational appreciation for beautiful and enduring design.

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In 2015, Alice decided to trade the bustle of Perth for tranquil country living.  The magnetic allure of wide-open spaces, clean fresh air, green pastures and salty blue seas was too great to resist. This move enhanced her intuitive understanding of the psychology of spaces, materials, light and colours, and the powerful effect those elements have on mental health. This intuition illuminates her approach to design.

 

When Alice is not designing awe-inspiring buildings, she’s going on adventures in nature with her sons or travelling widely to expand her rich knowledge of international cultures and how it influences architecture (this includes, riding down Death Road in Bolivia). Her not-so-secret superpower is that she can memorise your entire house in just one visit. Like every superhero, Alice wants to make the world a better place and she does that through her passion for shaping the built environment to establish a strong sense of identity and purposefulness in the community.

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The colour scheme and tones are light and neutral. The office furniture is recycled, and local volunteer craftsmen upcycled old church pews to add character to the windowsills.

While the garden is still in its infancy, native flora was carefully chosen to weep and grow over the retaining walls, form hedging and provide ample flowers when in bloom to decorate vases in the office. 

The use of multiple large windows provides an outside vista for staff. 

An encircling verandah provides a perfect venue for staff break-outs and functions which are accessed via multiple points.

Bunbury Anglican Diocesan Office Building – Open plan Office

How we delivered

To begin with, we suggested an alternate and superior site. This eliminated any disruption to staff and enabled them to remain until construction of the new site was complete.

The Op-Shop was relocated to the retained Walker Hall temporarily.

We utilised hand-made brickwork and leveraged inspiration from local decorative features and the Cathedral.

We created street level building with easy street access and ramps to the main carpark.

The architectural drawings incorporated high ceilings, large windows and feature skylights.

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Bunbury Anglican Diocesan Office Building – Verandah break-out area
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Bunbury Anglican Diocesan Office Building – Church pew recycled for seating and window sills

The result

We challenged the notion that a commercial building has to look and feel commercial through the use of traditional ‘federation’ architecture. 

The open plan office area is bathed in enough indirect natural light that artificial lighting is seldom required during office hours. 

The client experienced significant cost savings and reductions in stress by not having to relocate staff and operations, not to mention saving rental costs they would have incurred during 10 months of construction.

The Anglican staff expressed their excitement as construction progressed and have all engaged with a happier and healthier working environment.

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What our clients say

Alice won the tender to design a new office for the Anglican Diocese of Bunbury. She blew us away with her imaginative use of the location. The design she came up with not only met all our requirements but is also a beautiful and unique building that carefully matches its particular location. Alice was a delight to work with because of her professionalism and thoroughness during all stages of the build and her responsiveness to any queries raised by us, or by the builder. The result is a stunning building completed ahead of schedule and within budget that is a joy to work in.

- Right Reverend Dr Ian Coutts - Anglican Diocese of Bunbury

Project details

Completion date: December 2020

Architect: Alice Ostrowski 

Builder: Challis Builders

Photographer: Dion Robeson

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Chat to us about what we can do for your project

Alice won the tender to design a new office for the Anglican Diocese of Bunbury. She blew us away with her imaginative use of the location. The design she came up with not only met all our requirements but is also a beautiful and unique building that carefully matches its particular location. Alice was a delight to work with because of her professionalism and thoroughness during all stages of the build and her responsiveness to any queries raised by us, or by the builder. The result is a stunning building completed ahead of schedule and within budget that is a joy to work in.

- Right Reverend Dr Ian Coutts -
Anglican Diocese of Bunbury

Discover why our clients love us

Alice won the tender to design a new office for the Anglican Diocese of Bunbury. She blew us away with her imaginative use of the location. The design she came up with not only met all our requirements but is also a beautiful and unique building that carefully matches its particular location. Alice was a delight to work with because of her professionalism and thoroughness during all stages of the build and her responsiveness to any queries raised by us, or by the builder. The result is a stunning building completed ahead of schedule and within budget that is a joy to work in.

- Right Reverend Dr Ian Coutts -
Anglican Diocese of Bunbury

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