ECU Joondalup building headed for top honours at World Architecture Festival

The Ngoolark building.
The Ngoolark building.

IT pays a striking tribute to Aboriginal culture and the design of the ECU Joondalup building has been recognised as one of the best in the world.

The university’s $44 million Student Services block, which opened this year, has been named a finalist in the World Architecture Awards.

The announcement comes after it won the title of Australia’s best commercial construction in the $10 million to $50 million category at the Australian Institute of Building awards night recently.

The building is named Ngoolark, which is the Nyungar word for the Carnaby’s black cockatoo. Its golden sun shading, which envelops the structure, was inspired by the plumage of the endangered West Australian bird.

Other Australian creatures such as the two-spotted line-blue butterfly (Bindi Bindi) and Gilbert’s honeyeater (Jingee) are also represented in the complex five-storey design.

Built by PACT Construction, it has a five-star energy efficiency rating. The eye-catching design was the brainchild of JCY Architects and Urban Designers.

PACT Construction general manager Jason Kunkler described a challenging project that could not disrupt university operations during its 20-month formation.

“This ECU project was unique in many ways and its complicated structure required input from the whole construction team, right from the commencement of the project,” he said.

“The end result exceeded everyone’s expectations; our client and their architect were both delighted that their vision for the building had been recognised and we believe this project has given the building industry in WA increased confidence when it comes to pushing the boundaries.”

The World Architecture Awards will be announced during the World Architecture Festival in Singapore from November 4 to 6.