2019 Australian Institute of Architects National Architecture Awards - NSW Educational Architecture Award
2019 Learning Environments Australasia - Excellence in Education Facility Design
2019 Learning Environments Australasia - New Construction/New Facility over $8m
2023 National Biophilic Design Awards - Building Scale
Sydney’s Taronga Zoo desire to be at the forefront of animal conservation, with a commitment to the importance of education and scientific discovery in the fight against wildlife under threat.
NBRS collaborated with the Taronga Conservation Society (TCS) to create a building that would support this commitment. A building that assists with the protection of our natural environment and inspires future generations. Our approach was based on bringing together three major hubs: Learning, Science, and the Collaboration Visitor Hub. Each hub not only connects to the others but connecting to the wider zoo. Over three levels, the design centres around a vibrant atrium space that links the building’s functions and allows scientists, animal carers, educationalists and the public to interact.
The Science Hub showcases and benefits from the zoo’s unique data and specimens. A facility for research scientists and university students, fostering the next generation of conservation innovation. Specialist laboratories and digital teaching labs provide opportunities to broaden partnerships with leading universities. These labs are glass fronted to place science on display.
The Learning Hub allows students from early learning, high school, through to researchers and tertiary students to interact with the zoo. Three immersive classrooms themed around the rainforest, arid and woodland habitats transform education at the Zoo and provide authentic STEM learning. The Visitor Hub allows a connection between visitors and the Institute. It has been designed for one-of-a-kind experiences to create a closer bond between students, scientists, animals and 300 staff.
In 2019 the Institute was recognised by Learning Environments Australasia and the Australian Institute of Architects as an innovative learning space.