VU's Footscray Nicholson Learning Commons is in the running for the prestigious 2013 National Architecture Awards in the Interior Architecture category, having recently won at state level in the Australian Institute of Architects' 2013 Victorian Architecture Awards.
Designed by architectural firm Cox Architecture, the Footscray Nicholson Learning Commons includes the Library, spaces for collaborative and interactive student work, student support services, café facilities and information and technology services.
According to Cox Architecture, "the Footscray Nicholson Learning Commons delivers a complex but unified environment for learning, technology, food and interaction in a space with the legibility and familiarity of a city lane".
University Librarian Ralph Kiel says the award "recognises VU's commitment to student experience through an environment that fosters collaboration and innovative learning. We know students thrive in unified spaces like this – it's flexible and fit-for-purpose, so that different areas can be tailored for different uses such as informal classes, discussions and quiet study".
With its contemporary interior design, café-style booths, discussion rooms, eye-catching walkways that link different areas, and WiFi connectivity, the Footscray Nicholson Learning Commons has rapidly gained popularity and become the focal point of the campus. There is also a dedicated 'Quiet Room' for those looking for a more traditional library experience.