Future Homes at MPavilion

Melbourne is proudly Australia’s ‘most liveable city’ – but how can we best accommodate a doubling of the population without doubling the footprint of the city? Join the OVGA at MPavilion on 13 February for a lively discussion on how we can face Melbourne’s housing challenges.


Read more: Future Homes at MPavilion

Redeveloped State Library Victoria opens to the public

The OVGA celebrates the official reopening of the State Library Victoria on 5 December 2019 by Australian design studio Architectus and Danish firm Schmidt Hammer Lassen Architects. The library represents the city’s enduring commitment to knowledge and creativity. The second and final stage of the $88.1m vision 2020 redevelopment renewed significant heritage spaces and created 40% more public space.

The OVGA assisted with the selection of the design team and gave advice during the early design development stages to ensure the protection of the architectural and cultural quality of Australia’s oldest and busiest public library. We congratulate the State Library Victoria and the architects from Architectus and Schmidt Hammer Lassen on their historically sensitive design and thoughtful reimagining of the role of the library in Melbourne’s future.

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Image above: Ian Potter Queen’s Hall, State Library Victoria, Photographer: Trevor Mein

Future Homes: Design Competition

The OVGA is partnering with DELWP to deliver ‘Future Homes’, a design competition for Victorian architects seeking fresh thinking about how we design and live in apartments. 

A prize pool of $500,000 will be awarded to exemplar apartment designs that can support better developments in Melbourne's suburbs. 

The competition will be launched in 2020. Further information is available on the dedicated webpage here.

The OVGA is partnering with DELWP to deliver ‘Future Homes’, a design competition for Victorian architects seeking fresh thinking about how we design and live in apartments.


A prize pool of $500,000 will be awarded to exemplar apartment designs that can support better developments in Melbourne's suburbs.


The competition will be launched in 2020. Further information is available on the dedicated webpage here:


The Level Crossing Removal Project (LXRP) were recognised at the Victorian Planning Institute Awards. The LXRP Urban Design Management Plan won the category ‘From Plan to Place’ and outlines an integrated and collaborative process to ensure urban design is embedded in the project lifecycle. The Office of Victorian Government Architect (OVGA) has contributed to the development of the management plan and provided ongoing input over the past 4 years to capture lessons learnt from earlier projects.

The LXRP was also awarded the Public Engagement and Community Planning category for the Caulfield to Dandenong Project. This high-profile project required extensive consultation with numerous stakeholders from early design stages through to implementation. The LXRP team collaborated with designers to unlock the benefits of elevating the rail to create new public space and improve connectivity for local communities.  The OVGA was an active member of the Community Open Space Expert Panel (COSEP) and advocated for high quality design outcomes.

The OVGA congratulates Lisa Dunlop, awarded Planner of the Year for 2019. Lisa is the Manager of Urban Design and Planning at LXRP and has been instrumental in the development of urban design frameworks and guidance documents. Lisa is a passionate and dedicated champion of urban design and actively promotes the value of high-quality design outcomes to create ‘Great Places’ for the community.

Read more information on the awards here

Corridor Carnival-7

Image above: Caulfield to Dandenong supplied by LXRP

Congratulations to the newest Life Fellows and Fellow recipients


Image above: Life Fellows and Fellow recipients at the Robin Boyd House

Congratulations to David Islip from our office and Rosemary Burne from our panel who were recently awarded the honour of Fellow from the Australian Institute of Architects. We also congratulate Shane Murray from the panel who was awarded a Life Fellow.

This year’s Life Fellows (LFRAIA) include: Simon Hanger, Suzanne Dance, Allen Kong, Shane Murray, Robert McBride and Clare Cousins.

This year’s Fellows (FRAIA) include: Rosemary Burne , David Islip and Stefan Mee.

Principles for Multi-Deck Commuter Car Parking

In order to contribute to the successful urban design of station precincts and activity centres, the OVGA has developed design principles for multi-deck commuter car parks as part of its continued advocacy for a high-quality legacy of city-shaping transport infrastructure. By adopting good design principles, multi-deck car parks can contribute to a well-connected, enjoyable and vibrant public realm.

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The Case for Good Design


Our everyday lives are touched by the spaces and places that surround us. The quality of these places – our buildings, streets, parks – impacts our interactions, understandings and memories.

‘The Case for Good Design: A guide for government’ compiles recent research and evidence showing how design affects us. Through local and international case studies, the guide demonstrates the real impact of design decisions in our built environment. The document shows good design to be a valid, even an imperative, ambition in public projects.

Findings highlight the importance of embedding design quality in every stage of a project’s lifecycle to inform decision-making across a selection of building types. The guide is intended as a work-in-progress with further evidence added as it emerges, circulating awareness of current best practice in design.


You can access the Case for Good Design here or as specific typologies below:

Education - Case for Good Design

Healthcare - Case for Good Design

Housing - Case for Good Design

Justice - Case for Good Design

Transport - Case for Good Design

Urban Design - Case for Good Design

Workplace - Case for Good Design

Australian Urban Design Awards 2019

The 2019 Australian Urban Design Awards were announced in Melbourne on Wednesday 30 October. Convened by the Planning Institute of Australia, Australian Institute of Landscape Architects, and Australian Institute of Architects, the awards showcased collaborations across the disciplines.

We congratulate the 10 projects, including 4 from Victoria who received awards and commendations across categories for built projects as well as leadership, advocacy and research. The Ferrars Street Education and Community Precinct in Southbank by Tract received an award for Built projects – local and neighbourhood scale.

The Awards were preceded by a keynote address by Marijn Schenk, one of the founders of Netherlands-based practice Next Architects. Several built projects were presented, showcasing the ability of the practice to creatively respond to diverse conditions in a country grappling with the potential impacts of climate change. The Dafne Schippers Bicycle Bridge in Utrecht, The Netherlands integrates a bicycle and pedestrian bridge with an elementary school and a park.


Image above: Dafne Schippers Bicycle Bridge, photographer: Jeroen Musch, Leven op Daken en Marcel IJzerman

William Wardell Seminar

OVGA presents the William Wardell Seminar - The Invention of Melbourne: A Baroque Archbishop and a Gothic Architect.  Tuesday 8th October, 6pm - Old Treasury Building.  Book here.


Victorian Government Architect - Jill Garner
The Gothic Bank - Peter Lovell
St Patrick's Cathedral - Arthur Andronas

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St Patrick's Cathedral


OVGA seeks talented design student through DPC Internship Program

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Image above: Yiling Shen, former summer intern on a site visit to Bendigo Hospital. Photo by Sophie Patitsas

The Office of the Victorian Government Architect is seeking applications from current final or penultimate year undergraduate and Juris Doctor students to participate in the 2019/2020 DPC Summer Internship Program. The internship will be a twelve-week Summer Internship Program, which commences on Monday 2 December 2019 and concludes on Friday 21 February 2020.

OVGA are seeking applications from students of architecture and other built environment disciplines. The successful intern will work across a range of advocacy projects, including built environment research and publications, gaining exposure to the wide-ranging work the office is involved with.

Applications are now open and close at midday, Monday 9 September. Further details and information on how to apply can be found on the Careers Vic website here.

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