Korayn Birralee Family Centre

Brand Architects

Korayn Birralee Family Centre in Corio, northern Geelong is a state-of-the-art integrated learning and child care facility for local families. It was conceived by the City of Greater Geelong as a major community asset that would align with both the council’s sustainability policy and their commitment to the One Planet Living Principles.

The centre consolidates kindergarten, long day care, maternal and child health, consulting rooms, and specialist family support services, and has been designed with a central thoroughfare interconnecting the services. Other features include administration areas, a toy library, commercial kitchen, community lounge, gathering spaces, an external play area, and a connection to the neighbouring Northern Bay College as an acknowledgement of the transition from kindergarten to school.

Achieving the highest grading of 6 Star Green Star Design & As Built certified rating from the Green Building Council of Australia, sustainability is woven into all aspects of the project. Features including an on-site 60kW solar PV system, natural ventilation via operable window louvres, energy efficient heating and cooling systems, and a rainwater tank for harvesting and reuse have established Korayn Birralee Family Centre as one of the benchmarks for sustainable design in the City of Greater Geelong. Occupants of the centre are provided with high air quality, thermal comfort and acoustic and visual comfort.

The building complements its local environment with a mostly neutral colour palette. The dynamic form and roof planes act as gesture to the local You Yangs mountain range, further evoking a sense of connectedness to the natural surroundings. The external play area offers a sensory learning experience and a large eel trap replica – designed and constructed in consultation with the local Wathaurong community – greets visitors at the building’s entry and allows for children to journey through its structure on their way to and from the centre.

Photography by Blue Tree Studios.