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Convention Centre scoops top Victorian architecture honours

The Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre has scooped four of the highest honours at this year’s Victorian Architecture Awards.
Presented by the Australian Institute of Architects, 43 awards and prizes were announced at a dinner on Friday 25 June attended by nearly 800 guests.
The Melbourne Convention Centre and Exhibition Centre by joint venture architects, Woods Bagot and NH Architecture has been honoured with the 2010 Victorian Architecture Medal for successfully crossing design boundaries and taking out awards in four categories: the William Wardell Award for Public Architecture, the Steel Architecture Award, an Award for Sustainable Architecture and the esteemed Melbourne Prize.
Victorian Architecture Medal Jury Citation
The Melbourne Convention Centre and Entertainment Centre is the first convention centre in the world to achieve a 6 Star Green Star environmental rating. This unique project reveals a number of design ideas that make it a leading project in contemporary world architecture. The green building’s innovative sustainable design and operational features ensure that the comforts of delegates as well as the protection of the environment go hand-in-hand.
Features of the building include enormous attention to creating a truly sustainable building on a grand scale. The indoor environment quality has a direct impact on the health and well being of building occupants. The project team has addressed this concern by having 90 per cent of the gross floor area incorporate alternative/non conventional ventilation solutions including displacement ventilation, chilled beams and mixed mode.
Furthermore 90 per cent of the GFA air-conditioning systems are either 100 per cent outside air with no recirculation or with CO2 sensors.
The building has been designed so that 30 per cent of the GFA achieves a daylight factor of not less than 2.5 per cent as measured at floor level under a uniform sky. It will also achieve a thermal comfort PMV level of -1 to +1 for 98 per cent of the year.
Displacement ventilation, energy-saving light fittings, a water treatment plant and solar hot water systems are also some of the considered devices the architects have used throughout the construction.
The use of FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) timber, which is environmentally friendly, rather than non-renewable timber, have been used throughout. Furniture has been selected for its low environmental impact; painted surfaces and floor coverings use low volatile organic compound materials. Even the large usage of natural timbers such as Australian spotted gum was sourced from accredited sustainable forests, the project sponsoring the first sustainable forest accredited supplier.
The Melbourne Convention Centre is fully integrated with the exhibition centre, creating the largest combined exhibition and convention facility in Australia.