Church of Christ

The pared-back, monolithic form of this church in Melbourne’s south-eastern suburbs references the scale and majesty of traditional church architecture. The brief called for a 700-seat auditorium alongside childcare facilities, a commercial kitchen and a cafe, as well as office facilities for the church’s chaplaincy team.

Located on a triangular site on a busy road, the project is characterised by its strong exterior form. A curving roof sweeps up to the sky, while the solidity of its concrete panels is balanced by carefully modulated openings – see, for example, the sculpted slot windows that dapple the gallery with strips of light, or the cantilevering roof that shelters the windows of the cafeteria to manage sunlight.

The project also brought with it a range of technical requirements. To accommodate the auditorium’s heavy-duty audio setup, a sturdy truss became a striking sculptural element angling across the ceiling. An array of acoustic panels in fabric and timber line the space. In the childcare centre, which hosts Sunday School sessions as well, the muted neutrals of the main auditorium give way to brightly coloured panels and hard-wearing child-friendly materials.