RMIT University Master of Architecture Graduate Project 2015
Supervisor: Dr Michael Spooner
This project is an aggregation of mosque, community plaza, library and student housing. It is located adjacent to Melbourne’s first public park Flagstaff Garden and St James Old Cathedral, Melbourne’s first cathedral relocated from Collins St in 1914. Flagstaff House, an elegant office podium designed by Yuncken Freeman in 1968, is optimistically retained on site.
The immediate area will contend with more than 1000 future apartments.
The project capitalises on the growing Muslim community presence in the area. An existing mosque within a renovated industrial building reaches more than capacity five times a day as it attempts to attend to the arrival of students, taxi drivers and office workers. Existing eateries and halal providers support the temporal activity forming a distinct experience of the city.
This project argues through its visage for the value of architecture to attend to the history and meaning of a city. The tower is an attempt to realise a beacon to those great cities of exchange that bordered the cities of east and west. It was at these junctions that we could collectively minister to the metaphysical and to the founding of knowledge.
Straddling the threshold between city and garden, this extraordinary form bears witness to paradise.