Memorial and teaching academy named finalists in 2023 Victorian Premier’s Design Awards

Brendan Rees

East Melbourne’s Victorian Family Violence Memorial and the Victorian Academy of Teaching and Leadership are both up for prestigious architecture design awards.

The two highly-regarded sites have been announced as finalists in the architectural design category of the 2023 Victorian Premier’s Design Awards - the state's highest design accolade.

The Family Violence Memorial is a landscaped garden at the corner of St Andrews Place and Lansdowne St honouring victims and survivors of family violence, while the academy is state-of-the-art professional learning facility for Victorian teachers and school leaders.

Designed by architecture firm Muir+Openwork, as well as traditional owners, and Indigenous advisor Sarah Lynn Rees, the memorial opened in April 2022, in partnership between the state government, the City of Melbourne, and the Victim Survivors’ Advisory Council.

One of the gardens’ attractions is its purple flowers that bloom all year - symbolic of the global movement to end family violence, and a pathway which leads to an English Elm tree representing the passing of time and renewal.

The $16.8 million academy, located at 41 St Andrews Place, was created by DesignInc Melbourne after having transformed a former 1858-built government printworks building into a state-of-the-art, contemporary adult learning and teaching facility.

The venue opened in 2022 and features presentation and function spaces to host conferences, as well heritage architecture with light-filled spaces, celebrating its rich history as a government printing office.

The project’s designers described the academy as a venue to “inspire and uplift educators on their journey of professional growth and transformation”.

Winners of the 2023 Victorian Premier’s Design Awards will be announced at a ceremony in March.

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