South Australian deputy premier John Rau has announced the winners of the Royal Adelaide Hospital Site Design Competition, with the top prize of $200,000 awarded to Victorian practices Slash Architects and Phillips/Pilkington.

Designed to include a school, student accommodation, gallery and open spaces, the winning proposal was praised by the jury for its strong engagement with the neighbouring Botanic Garden and the streetscape.

The masterplan proposed the “selective removal of a number of secondary buildings, while retaining the more important heritage elements”.

“In doing so, the submission proposes a revitalisation of the ground plan, with greater circulation and connectivity along existing (if clogged) arteries within the site, as well as the introduction of a new diagonal line of circulation, leading from the southwest corner through the site, to the Botanic Gardens,” noted the judges.

One of the architects, Stuart Harrison, said the team worked hard to understand the social and physical history of the North Terrace site.

“The design really strives to work with the existing hospital site as much as possible, to embrace what’s good about the site and fix up those things that are bad,” said Harrison.

The People’s Choice Award went to Nice Architects with Mulloway Studios, who were tied with Bonhag and De Rosa with Taylor Cullity Lethlean in second place.

It is estimated the winning entry would cost $300 million to build, but the South Australian Government is under no obligation to accept it.

Renewal SA will lead the next phase of the site redevelopment and the State Government Architect will remain involved in the process.

See the shortlisted entries here.