Another busy year ahead

Published: Wednesday 20th January 2016

Message from Associate Vice Chancellor (Victoria) Dr John Ballard: Welcome back from the Christmas break and I am looking forward to another challenging and exciting year.

In the early weeks of January, the Campus is pristine, Facilities Management using this time to refresh for first semester and complete minor works.

The place invokes the spectre of the former BBC series, ‘Yes minister’ in the episode that highlighted the hospital awarded for administrative excellence, albeit in the absence of any patients.

This week a small student presence is evident in the Summer Schools and library and I expect numbers of both students and staff to build after Australia Day through to Orientation week.

In addition to expecting record Campus numbers, we are embarking this year on the detailed regulatory process to gain approval and commence design and construction of a new teaching building to be sited on the front car park adjacent to the Mary Glowrey Building on Victoria Parade.

It is envisaged that this building will be complete by 2018.It will provide an expansion of flexible teaching space and  incorporate multiple underground levels of car parking.

Other new works will include the relocation of the School of Arts from level 3 of the Mary Glowrey Building to a new Arts precinct around St. Albert’s Garden, off Graham Street and backing 32-38 Brunswick Street.We are also working on a draft refurbishment of the rooms at the front of Cathedral Hall, the 1873 building formerly the Exhibition Boot Factory.

Those who have taught or studied in the four teaching rooms of this building or have been housed in the upper level office accommodation will appreciate the need for significant works.Associated with these works the IT team will relocate in March from the upper levels to 174 Victoria Parade and we are working to establish a museum in honour of Dr Sr Mary Glowrey JMJ, Servant of God, on the uppermost level.

This space was allocated as offices to Mary Glowrey and the newly founded Catholic Women’s League in 1916 by Archbishop Carr. It is an ideal siting for a museum with an authentic air as it appears not to have been renovated or materially changed since Mary Glowrey left the building in 1920.

The hiatus from major works on Campus will continue throughout this year and come to an end at the beginning of 2017 when we anticipate major construction to commence.Once again, an enthusiastic welcome back for 2016 and what is shaping to be another busy year.