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RMIT Swanston Academic Building

Architect: Lyons Architects 2012

City of Melbourne | C13

Building Description

The RMIT Swanston Academic Building (SAB) is a world-class learning and teaching facility in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD. Its sustainable and innovative design has been praised by students, staff and visitors, and has won several prestigious industry awards since its opening in July 2012.

The building comprises some 35,000m2 of floor space over 11 levels, and is home to 6,000 students and 850 staff members. The new pedagogical teaching and learning spaces, ranging in scale from 360-seat interactive theatres through to 30-seat conversational spaces, are designed to support student-centred, or peer-to- peer, learning. The large lecture theatre’s layout promotes interconnection between the students for conversations, and technology in these theatres is used to create a digital discourse. In addition to the formal spaces, a key part of the design intention was to create informal student experiences throughout the building. Naturally ventilated urban rooms with views back to the surrounding cityscape provide places for students to work on their own or in groups. The SAB is an outstanding example of sustainable construction, and has been given a 5-star Green Star rating.

What's On

Guided tours led by Lyons Architects and volunteers

Need to Know

  • Open: Saturday 27 July 10am–3.45pm

  • Tour Type: Open Entry, Guided + Open Entry, Self-guided

  • Tour Details: Tours at 10am, 11am, 12pm, 1pm, 2pm and 3pm running 30 minutes in groups of 20.

  • Access: Fully accessible, pram accessible, all ages.

  • Notes: Toilets available

  • Building Type: Education

  • Architecture Era: Contemporary (2001- current)

  • Transport: Tram stop 7: RMIT University – Swanston St/Franklin St on routes 1, 3/3a, 5, 6, 8, 16, 64, 67, 72

  • Website:

  • Photo Credit: Courtesy of RMIT


Building 80, 445 Swanston Street, Melbourne 3000, Melbourne VIC


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