Australia’s Biggest Education Project Appoints Architect

Australia’s largest education precinct, the Footscray Learning Precinct (FLP), has taken a step forward after appointing architects to the project.

Hayball will be at the helm of the design and masterplan for the entire precinct in the major Melbourne growth corridor, which has over $10 million in funding from the State Government. The masterplan will include an early childhood centre, junior secondary school, a vertical school in Seddon as well as a number of refurbishments to primary schools in the area.

The FLP will be home to education facilities from preschool through to tertiary, spread across five separate sites in three distinct precincts.

Minister for Education James Merlino, Member for Williamstown Wade Noonan and Member for Footscray Marsha Thomson visited Footscray City Primary School today to release the Footscray Learning Precinct Feasibility Report and announce a further $10.6 million for the next stage of the project.

Minister for Education James Merlino said the precinct is a first for the country.

“The Footscray Learning Precinct is an Australian-first that will transform education in the inner-west.”

“We’re listening to the community and getting on with this project – to give these kids a great education and the best possible start in life.”

The precinct will link, expand and upgrade schools across Melbourne’s inner west and integrate learning at all levels, from early childhood to university.

The project involves a broader vision to  provide for individual learning needs no matter what stage of life a person is at or what skills they do or do not have.

The next stage of development includes advanced master planning and designs for all sites, including a new secondary campus to be built in Seddon. This stage also includes the redevelopment of Gilmore College for Girls and Footscray City Primary School.

The Footscray Learning Precinct is part of the Government’s $2.5 billion investment in Victorian schools, including over 1,000 existing schools projects and 56 new schools.

The final governance model and transition arrangements will be announced at the end of 2017, following consultation with local school communities and agreement from School Councils.

Hayball Director Richard Leonard said the project would transform Footscray.

“Never before has Australia seen a learning precinct of this scale, linking preschool, K-12 and tertiary education spaces together across three hubs to transform Footscray from an industrial city to a knowledge city. As the population of the suburb grows, this precinct will provide a powerful solution to a series of educational and cultural challenges that are set to arise over the next 10, 20 and 30 years by offering shared spaces and services for students and the community alike. The Footscray Learning Precinct brings the concept of Smart City to Melbourne’s inner west, creating partnerships and links from education and community learning providers.  This ambitious project will provide the long-term vision for world-class education in the inner west,” Mr Leonard said.

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