Creeds Farm Living & Learning Centre is located four kilometres north west of Melbourne’s Epping town centre in the Aurora housing estate. The learning centre project includes a meeting room, program spaces, training areas, a community kitchen and a garden.
The Creeds Farm Centre is essentially an eco-demonstration house, committed to showcasing sustainable design and behaviour within the living community. The centre is a collaborated effort to place early infrastructure in a rapidly growing area, which anticipates an increased population of 25,000 people to the area.
The concept of developing an early hub for community activities and services resulted from broad based research undertaken in 2004. This consultation recognized the desire of residents and potential residents to feel connected to their new growing community.
The communities surrounding Creeds Farm are at the beginning of their growth cycles, attracting younger families, couples and first home-owners into the area. The need for increased services and facilities and for more flexible and innovative approaches to service deliveries are addressed in this ground-breaking project.
The building design is exceptionally innovative in its commitment to adopting environmentally sustainable design principles. The project also identifies flexible design principles that will adapt to multiple uses that change over time as well as design principles that promote interactivity that will involve and connect the community.
Working with RMIT Centre for Design, Creeds Farm achieved a rating equivalent of 7.2 stars from the Green Building Council of Australia. The development of the project reflects a long-term collaboration between the local community, North East Neighbourhood House Network, the City of Whittlesea, Melbourne Citymission, The Hornery Institute and VicUrban.
The main building of the project has a simple skillion roof that ‘folds’ back and forth creating a unique zig-zag plan, reinforcing the street edge to the south, and into the park towards the north.
Timber finishes abound both internally and externally as a design feature. The light filled spaces make the most of the surrounding natural elements; sunlight and open spaces. Outside living is maximized as the building seamlessly merges inside and outside spaces from light filled rooms into open garden spaces.
Creeds Farm Living & Learning Centre won the Best Commercial Exterior in the 2011 Intergrain Timber Vision Awards and also received a Commendation in the Sustainability category at the 2012 Victorian Architecture Awards.