As August closes and we roll into spring, we’ve decided to recap the top 10 stories covered this month.

Click on the title to be taken to the original story, and let us know which your favourites were - or what else we should have covered.

1.jpg1. Tests highlight massive benefits of CLT/concrete hybrid construction system

Results from a joint research project by America’s Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and Oregon State University concludes that there is strong evidence that a timber-concrete composite construction system can satisfy code requirements and compete in terms of structural performance with traditional construction methods.



2.jpg2. Your new Sydney Opera House by ARM, Tonkin Zulaikha Greer and Scott Carver

ARM Architecture, Tonkin Zulaikha Greer (TZG) and Scott Carver architects will all play a role in the $202 million renovation of the Sydney Opera House, the building’s biggest upgrade since opening its doors in 1973.




3.jpg3. Gone: Sydney's Sirius apartments face demolition after heritage push fails

The Tao Gofers-designed Sirius apartment building at The Rocks in Sydney will be sold without a heritage listing and is likely to be knocked down.

The New South Wales Government announced that it would deny Gofer’s brutalist social housing project a heritage listing because of the financial implications and would begin drafting a stage one development application for the 3647sqm site.


4.jpg4. Michael Rayner resigns from Cox Brisbane to start his own firm

Sydney-born architect Michael Rayner will move on from the studio he founded for Phillip Cox in 1990, after 26 successful years at the helm. Why? Well it seems that Cox Rayner’s successes and growth in the QLD capital have become a little bittersweet for its founding director. 



5.jpg5. The return of the breeze block

Breeze blocks are having a moment in the sun, says Naomi Stead from The University of Queensland. Having been painfully hip in the architecture of the 1950s and 60s, they were used so extensively, in both houses and commercial buildings, that they became ubiquitous anywhere in the world where it was hot – but now they’re making a return in Australia.



6.jpg6. Apartments win 2016 Victorian Building Design of the Year

A multi-residential development has been awarded Building Design of the Year for the first time in the BDAV Building Design Awards history, adding fuel to the fiery discussion surrounding who should and who shouldn’t be allowed to design apartment buildings in Victoria.



7.jpg7. Jackson Architecture director Alastair Swayn dies

Australia has lost another esteemed architect, this time in the nation’s capital where Alastair Swayn passed away on Thursday, 4 August.

The Scotland-born architect has been practicing in Australia since 1973 and been the director and office manager for Jackson Architecture’s Canberra studio since 1981.


8.jpg8. The million dollar home behind walls and foliage: 33 Holland Park by Studio Milou

One British colonial residence built in the 1930s for an English civil servant in Singapore continues to stand today, although you wouldn’t be able to tell if you drove past its prestigious address. What began as a conservation project for a conserved single-storey bungalow built of brick masonry with a wooden frame, flat roof tiles and interior teak flooring, has expanded into an out-of-view, connected multi-generation home that uses greenery and glass to create harmony between old and new. 

9.jpg9. This Queensland office by Ellivo Architects will make you jealous with its escape slide

No one bats an eyelid at how fun Facebook or Google’s offices are anymore. It’s almost expected that game rooms and sleeping pods are part of how these firms function. But Aerocare, a leading independent ground handling company with an established presence in Australia and New Zealand, shows that you don’t have to be a tech company or creative agency to own a workspace that highlights a sense of adventure, fun and youth…and which comes with its own escape slide.

10.jpg10. Aged care follows high-rise trends in Adelaide

As space becomes tight in our cities, we’re increasingly building up, and this is not just to meet housing demand. Right across Australia we’re seeing designers turn to high-rise for a variety of building typologies and also to combine a variety of building typologies.

But until recently, it would have been inconceivable to consider high-rise and seniors living as compatible.