Awards For Excellence Highlight Importance Of Shade

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12th December 2008, 02:12pm - Views: 1110

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Media Release


Friday 12 December 2008


Jane Thomas, SunSmart Media & Communications 03 9635 5271 / 0408 567 521

Awards for excellence highlight importance of shade

Two Victorian architecture firms have been recognised for their shade projects with primary

and secondary schools, winning categories in the SunSmart Shade Awards 2008.

The awards recognise achievement and innovation in shade provision and have been won by

Inverleigh Primary School in conjunction with Now Architecture and St Bede’s College

(Mentone) in conjunction with Kneeler Design Architects.

The two organisations were recognised for Excellence in the following category:

Schools and early childhood services (built works / natural shade design):

Inverleigh Primary School, application by Now Architecture: the project of outdoor shaded

decks combined the need for solar protection with seasonal comfort by using ‘controllable’

shading, ensuring shade requirements were responsive to seasonal needs.

St Bede’s College Outdoor Classroom, application by Kneeler Design Architects: the

project resulted in the development of an outdoor classroom and recreation area. A

range of activities and spaces were created and protected by built and natural shade

elements that provided high levels of ultraviolet (UV) protection whilst allowing sunlight

access in cooler months. 

SunSmart Manager Sue Heward says shade is very important in reducing skin cancer rates.

“Shade can reduce overall exposure to UV radiation by up to 75 per cent and is just as

important in protecting people against skin cancer as sunscreen, hats, clothing and

sunglasses,” Ms Heward said. 

“Yet Cancer Council Victoria research shows many outdoor facilities and venues in Victoria

have inadequate levels of shade. The SunSmart Shade Awards acknowledge organisations

across Victoria that have made shade provision a priority.”

Inverleigh Primary School Principal Peter Kirby said Now Architecture worked closely with the

school community in designing the shade structure and were to be commended for their

forward thinking approach.

“The school acknowledges the creative thinking of Now Architecture in including the shade

sails as part of the building structure which cleverly absorbed the costs of the shade facility into

the overall building project and lessened the financial impact of the work,” Mr Kirby said.

“The sails created an area adjacent to the classrooms that can be used as an outside learning

space during class time, for performances, as a space to relax and eat lunch or simply as a

place to play – all in the secure environment of a shaded space.”

St Bede’s Principal Br. Garry Coyte said the school is delighted with the design and

construction of the shade area.

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“The project created by Kneeler Design Architects has suited our needs well, providing

excellent sunshade in the hotter months and a warm gathering spot in the winter months. The

shade area has given us a special and rejuvenated space that has been well used by the

school community.” 

Sue Heward said shade provision is an important part of providing a safe, healthy environment

for local communities. 

“These awards demonstrate that organisations and individuals can have a significant impact

on a community’s physical and built environment by incorporating good shade design, using

both built and natural elements,” Ms Heward said.

“We congratulate all organisations who entered their projects in the SunSmart Shade Awards. 

“Our hope is that by showcasing best practice, schools, councils, businesses, sport clubs and

community organisations will be encouraged to plan more shade in their communities and

design attractive and practical open spaces that take Victoria’s high levels of UV radiation into


- Ends -


SunSmart Shade Awards

Initiated in 2006, SunSmart Shade Award recipients are either recognised for Excellence or

Commended for shade design, application and policy in local government, schools and early

childhood services, workplaces and sport clubs.

The judging panel for this year’s awards included:

John Greenwood, an architect with 25 years experience in design and construction,

specializing in designing and planning outdoor environments that are protected from UV


Peter Hirst, an architect, town planner and urban designer. Peter has worked on the planning

and design of award winning subdivisions and housing, ensuring solar access and solar


Clare Hargreaves, Manager of Social Policy for the Municipal Association of Victoria. Clare

has 30 years experience in working in the public sector for both state and local governments

where one of her main focuses has been social planning.

Now Architecture

NOWarchitecture (formerly Cowland North Architecture) is a leading architecture and

design practice based in Fitzroy. Established for 24 years the practice has undertaken a

wide variety of commercial, institutional and residential projects throughout Victoria and

interstate using a rigorous design methodology.

Kneeler Design Architects

Based in Collingwood, Kneeler Design Architects works across architecture, planning,

interiors and landscape projects with a focus on public buildings. Kneeler Design

Architects is accredited as a 'Firstrate' Housing Energy rater through Sustainability


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