Wenona STEM Centre and Sporting Facility
North Sydney, NSW
This major development for Wenona School presented a challenge to design a new multilevel building that seamlessly ties in to the existing surrounding buildings. Commencing construction in 2017, this world-class, sustainable, “university-style” building incorporates state-of-the-art science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) learning areas; laboratories and food technology kitchens; flexible study areas; and a sports science hub. One of the project’s main features is a basement aquatic centre with a 25 metre main pool and a 15 metre learn-to-swim pool.
External factors that influenced the design involved the school needing to remain operational during construction, and the close proximity of the site to adjacent properties and roads.
TTW engineers were tasked to create a solution that overcame these challenges and allowed the structural zones to match the surrounding linked building levels without the requirement for ramps or steps. This required several innovative solutions, including: hanging the intermediate floors from long span roof beams; the transfer of columns out over the pool areas by long span; and multi-strand post-tensioned concrete portal frames. Additional features include large glass skylights at ground floor allowing light to flow into the basement pool areas below, and the development of extensive shoring and pinning works to prevent undermining of the surrounding buildings.