Eye Institute

The site adjoins a busy arterial road running along an isthmus ridgeline and falls to the west. There are views across the Newmarket Valley in an arc to several volcanic cones.

The site lies within a healthcare precinct which is progressively displacing an established residential suburb immediately to the west.

The client brief identified sculptural, tectonic forms floating above a transparent base. The tenant brief included examination and specialised surgical suites over the lower two levels, with administration on the third floor and two parking basements.

Site planning options were investigated to determine the impact these would have on adjoining residential neighbours. The preferred operational configuration included a porte cochere entry forecourt set slightly below street level. The upper levels of the building were cantilevered above to provide shelter and better align with the street edge. East facing glazing and balconies provide passive surveillance and animate the street elevation.

Once the operational planning had been analysed and refined, the “spirit” of the project was investigated and the identity of the tenant expressed within the building envelope. This involved a subtle modification of the form to better reference “Eye Institute”.

The association with “the eye” suggested a transformation of the rectilinear building section referencing an ellipse, and responding to the declining topography, resulted in an inclined “crease” down the length of the building.

The form of the envelope is progressively fragmented to better reflect the grain of the residential suburb behind.

The interiors accommodate multiple clinical functions, but in public spaces are based on the relationship between the geometric ellipse of an eye and the warm organic field of flesh that frames the eye.

Key spaces are focused on white geometric joinery set within undulating walls of clear finished vertical timber battens.




Project Team

Lindsay Mackie
Russell Pinel



Press & Awards

DINZ Best Awards Spatial-Healthcare Bronze Award 2016
Interior Awards Workplace Finalist 2015