Emerging talent needs the right space to shine. Working closely with Knox Grammar School, we designed a state-of-the-art Junior Academy and Performing Arts Centre (JAPAC) that gives students the perfect platform for learning, collaboration and self-expression.
When you’re finding your way in life, your most valuable resources are inspiration, learning and encouragement. The new JAPAC building at Sydney’s Knox Grammar School gives K-12 students a wide range of professional-standard performance spaces to enable them to discover and develop their skills in real-world settings.
State-of-the-art facilities on a challenging site
The ambitions for the new campus were huge, but the site wasn’t. Restricted by the North Shore railway line, nearby residential housing, the existing school buildings and an active floodplain, the plans had to make the most of available space while fulfilling essential acoustic needs for world-class performance and recording.
Extensive site reviews, early CDC planning pathway, and design development resulted in a solution that shaped the new building and its envelope around two core needs – academic functionality and performing arts functionality.
Despite the limitations, the final design included a 750-seat auditorium with a fly tower and orchestra pit, 160-seat drama theatre, choral room, rehearsal rooms, drama room, dance studio, several music rooms, a recording studio, rock lab, peripatetic Music rooms and a three-storey foyer connecting the theatrical and learning areas.
The perfect balance of architecture, education and engineering
The new facility helps students develop a sense of identity, express themselves and develop skills and relationships that complement the school’s other academic programs, engaging the wider community and creating production, performance, design and technology opportunities.