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Australian Film Television and Radio School

Cox Richardson complete a new premises for the AFTRS in Sydney’s Entertainment Quarter.

Australian Film Television and Radio School


September 13th, 2010

Designed by Cox Richardson, the new School premises are located in The Entertainment Quarter, adjacent Fox Studios.

Joe Agius, Director Cox Richardson and lead architect on the AFTRS project said, “The organising principal of the design was driven by the convergence of technology within the Media Industry.”


“The new building has given the School the opportunity to restructure to align with, and acknowledge these technology-driven shifts.”

“The design creates a lively but coherent campus, one where all departments were actively engaged in the life of the school – and both students and academics were removed from the ‘siloed’ environments common to education buildings.”


As Australia’s pre-eminent tertiary education provider for professional Media Studies, the School integrates teaching and administrative spaces coupled with technical teaching spaces, comprising Film/Television, Radio and Recording Studios, Theatres, Post-Production facilities and Editing Suites, and a publicly accessible Media Resource Centre, Cinema and Café on a 1100m2 footprint.

Critically a commitment has been made by the School to new workplace and educational practices: all staff, from the Head of School down being accommodated in an ‘open-plan’ environment on a singular floor-plate, student facilities are configured similarly. 


This accommodation includes study work points for students, and all requisite ‘quiet- spaces’ associated with open-plan office environments. The new building has engendered both a broad cultural change, and also substantially reduced the space the School requires to operate.


In form, the School is comprised of two, three-storey wings, arranged in an L-shape configuration. The academic accommodation and standard teaching components are located in an eastern wing, which has good solar orientation and vistas, while a western wing contains the major studio spaces. Other technical areas are spread across both wings.

The building is understated in form but crisply detailed using a simple and robust palette of materials – deeply profiled metal panel, plywood, off-form concrete and glass.

Cox Architecture

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