kids under cover studio

Designed as a prototype for the Melbourne-based non-for-profit Kids Under Cover, this project engages with a range of design questions that are both qualitative and quantitative in nature:

  • How can a site-less studio respond to context? Orientation? Season? Solar radiation? Potential existing conditions?
  • How can the inhabitants connect better with the studio and foster a sense of place and belonging?
  • How can the materials promote sustainability and be cost effective?
  • How can a studio be durable enough to sustain a lifespan of more than 15 years?
  • How does the studio respond to issues of security and safety?
  • How does the studio encourage interdependence?
  • How does the studio respond to issues of privacy and connection?

The brief called for the design of three types of studios that could be built in any location around Australia, and involved strict planning parameters to ensure a smooth building process once on site. This included the need for the design to be de-mountable, relocatable, quick to construct, and for each building element to be able to be carried through a regular door by a maximum of two people. The resultant design is constructed entirely from pre-fabricated SIPs (Structurally Insulated Panels), negating the need for standard frame-and-infill construction and cutting the number of trades required on site. These pre-finished floor, wall, and roof panels can be slotted together within hours, with an estimated total build time of around 1 week.

Formal explorations enabled us to arrive at a design that both conforms to the strict height restrictions, and also promotes a sense of lightness and space internally. The use of OSB as an internal floor and wall finish also provides a canvas for inhabitants to project their own personalities onto, whilst flexible window placement enables each studio to respond to its specific home.


Project Team: Andrew Simpson, Dani Mileo, Ryan Bate, Emma Parkinson
Completed: 2016
Builder: Martin Builders

images | drawings | model