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Founded Year

2003

About Baker College

Baker College is the largest independent non-profit private college in the state of Michigan. It is located Flint, Michigan.

Baker College Headquarter Location

1020 S Washington St,

Owosso, Michigan, 48867,

United States

Latest Baker College News

Faith and vision deliver new sporting centre

Sep 3, 2021

Advertisement Having the right client can elevate a project several notches. In the case of Baker College in Hornsby, on Sydney’s Upper North Shore, the school’s principal, Phillip Heath, was certainly the right client. Located on a ridge on traditional Dharg Country, the school required a new sporting centre. Credit:Rory Gardiner “You could say Phillip is a visionary, someone who is able to bring everyone concerned on board and in the right direction,” says architect Rachel Neeson, co-director of Neeson Murcutt + Neille, who worked closely with co-director, architect Stephen Neille, their team and l360 Degrees Landscape Architecture. This faith and vision also delivered the practice the William Kemp Award for Educational Architecture from the Australian Institute of Architects (NSW chapter). Founded in 1890 with only five pupils, Barker College, a co-educational private school, has 2600 students, starting from kindergarten age through to year 12. The centre features a parasol-style canopy covered in a high-tech fabric, translucent polycarbonate walls and glass. Credit:Rory Gardiner Located on a ridge on traditional Dharg Country, the school required a new sporting centre “for every student, every experience, every day”, according to the brief. Referred to as Physical Development Health and Education, the brief to the architects was for five different indoor sporting offerings that would accommodate basketball, netball, volleyball, fencing, judo and gymnastics, with a number of these spaces to be flexible. Unlike many sporting facilities that have a strong sense of enclosure (read brick walls dotted with rows of artificial light), the Rosewood Centre has an ethereal feel, lightly touching the steeped terrain (a gradient of up to eight metres). Featuring a parasol-style canopy covered in a high-tech fabric, translucent polycarbonate walls and glass, the new centre is often likened to being in a “cloud”. Advertisement A generous overhang, extending up to six metres, deflects the direct sunlight and frames the entrance. “We wanted to be an immersive experience rather than simply delineating spaces with walls for acoustic control,” says Neille, pointing out the measures to control the acoustics, including soft grey acoustic panels on the top floor for spectators that resemble an oversized coffered ceiling. Each court has its own height requirements, so manipulating the spaces vertically also came with challenges. Spread over three levels, including basement car parking, there’s a timber stair piercing the various spaces that’s extended in part to create seating. A generous skylight brings natural light to the core of the centre (with a total floor area of almost 13,500 square metres including the basement level). Loading Instead of glass balustrades, Neeson Murcutt + Neille used Ronstan, a wire that not only ensures safety, but also contains balls and further blurs divisions. “It also requires no maintenance, unlike with glass that continually has to be cleaned,” says Neeson, who also used a fine rubber, red handrail (one of the school’s colours) as a navigation tool. However, for parents and those coming to watch the various games, it’s often the smell of coffee from the coffee/drinks pod on the top floor that initially beckons them, along with the views over the adjacent Rosewood oval, immediately to the south. As well as courts, there are glass-fronted classrooms, breakout spaces and importantly, an even temperature established through the finely articulated roof and louvred glass walls for cross ventilation. Loading Some angular fixed-glass picture windows beautifully respond to the fall of the land. Used for larger events such as assemblies, as well as for a myriad of sporting events, the Rosewood Centre has become a beacon, not only for the school, but also the broader community. “When Phillip became principal a few years ago (also initiating the move to being co-educational), he was keen to shift the focus towards the east part of the campus, as was architect Paul Davies who prepared the masterplan for the school,” says Neille. Neeson adds: “The idea was to step back from the school’s heritage precinct with buildings dating from the early 20th century and create a legacy for the future.” The Morning Edition newsletter is our guide to the day’s most important and interesting stories, analysis and insights. Sign up here . Save

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