Victorian Architecture Awards 2023

This year’s winners of the 2023 Victorian Architecture Awards have just been unveiled with the University of Melbourne Student Precinct by Lyons with Koning Eizenberg Architecture, NMBW Architecture Studio, Greenaway Architects, Architects EAT, Aspect Studios and Glas Urban receiving the lauded Victorian Architecture Medal.

In a celebration of collaboration and sustainability, the 2023 Awards collectively demonstrate the transformative power of architecture and its capacity to reflect, modulate and influence the vernacular in profound ways. Victorian State President, David Wagner FRAIA said “this year’s awards recipients have indelibly shaped our built environment, showcasing the world-class ingenuity and expertise that resides in our state. The impressive range and diversity of winning projects are a testament to the strength of the architectural profession in Victoria, illustrating architecture’s broad reach in urban, suburban and rural contexts.”

Nightingale Village, photo by Tom Ross.

A total of 16 Named Awards, 23 Architecture Awards and 25 Commendations were granted from a competitive pool of 130 shortlisted projects. Alongside the University of Melbourne Student Precinct, deservedly acknowledged for its collective team of Australia’s foremost designers, planners and architects and its simultaneous receipt of named awards in Educational Architecture and Urban Design categories as well as an Architecture Awards for Heritage Architecture, Nightingale Village was also the most awarded project of the year.

Warrnambool Library and Learning Centre, photo by Derek Swalwell.

The Bendigo Law Courts by Wardle received the William Wardell Award for Public Architecture, while the Architecture Award for the category went to long time Neometro friends and collaborators Kerstin Thompson Architects for the Melbourne Holocaust Museum and Kosloff Architecture for the Warrnambool Library and Learning Centre which also took out the Regional Prize.

Spring Creek Road Farm House, photo by Thurston Empson.

The Harold Desbrowe-Annear Award for Residential Architecture - Houses (New) went to Spring Creek Road Farm House by Michael Lumby with Nielsen Jenkins. A Commendation went to Neometro Director Jeff Provan’s Mori House designed in a global-reaching collaboration between MAArchitects and Aires Mateus with the jury citation stating; “Mori House adeptly reinterprets the beach shack paradigm through a cross-cultural lens.” “Robust in its tectonic exactitude and material restraint, the muted concrete carapace serves as a backdrop to the rich looseness in beachside occupation and multi-generational living.”

Mori House, photo by Derek Swalwell.

Continuing with the multiple housing category, Kerstin Thompson Architects was awarded the Best Overend Award for Residential Architecture - Multiple Housing for the second year running with this year’s award recognising Kerr Street Residences. Commendations went to Neometro collaborators Fieldwork for 38 Albermarle Street, Kensington and Edition Office for Fenwick as well as ARM Architecture for Viv’s Place and the collaborative team behind Nightingale Village which consisted of Architecture Architecture, Austin Maynard Architects, Breathe, Clare Cousins Architects, Hayball and Kennedy Nolan. Nightingale Village also received the Dimity Reed Melbourne Prize, named for the visionary female architect in recognition of her significant urban and architectural contributions to Melbourne City.

Kerr Street Residences, photo by Derek Swalwell.

The Maggie Edmond Enduring Architecture Award, another named award which celebrates the success of female architects, was awarded to Gregory Burgess Architects for Brambuk: The National Park and Cultural Centre.

Brambuk - The National Park and Cultural Centre, photo by Trevor Mein.

“If you want to win an award, these are the ones to win,” said Neometro Director, Jeff Provan. “The process alone is rigorous and engaged, involving a fair amount of discussion and intellect. It’s the only industry award where the shortlisted projects are subjected to a physical inspection resulting in a great critique of your project but beyond that, the Architecture Awards are inherently peer respected. They unite and celebrate the collaborative outcomes of which the whole architecture landscape benefits from.”

Neometro and Open Journal extend deep congratulations to all the award recipients. Feature image of University of Melbourne Student Precinct by Peter Bennetts. Words by Tiffany Jade.