Royal Adelaide Hospital Site Design Competition

State South Australia
Client Office of Design and Architecture South Australia
Competition Anonymous Open Two Stage Design Competition
Winner SLASH
Bob Nation Past National President AIA
Dr Catherin Bull Academic & Past National President AILA
Catherine Slessor The Architectural Review
Marcus Spiller Principal & Partner SGS Economics & Planning
Timothy Hill Donovan Hill
Tim Horton Comissioner Land and Environment Court
Shelley Penn Past Associate Government Architect OVGA & Past National President AIA

The Competition
The competition comes at a time when Adelaide is taking a fresh look at how the inner city of Adelaide functions, what its needs are and how decisions that impact the city’s future are made.

In responding to the site the competition also represents an opportunity to engage with the city and with the State’s many ambitions for the city. Stage two teams were to be paid $100,000 prize money if they were judged in the top three, and the winning design received a $200,000 prize.  

The Brief
The brief contained many challenges that required a thoughtful response to local conditions. Issues such as Adelaide’s existing and projected population, existing and projected transport infrastructure, its urban form and planning constraints, the particularities of the local climate are just some of the issues.

The design was to ensure that the site became a meeting point for park and city. Another element of critical importance was the need to carefully consider the historical and heritage nature of the site.

The Winner
This submission expands the repertoire of civic spaces within Adelaide with a creative re-animation of the site’s historic fabric. While the existing city might be characterised as highly ordered and zoned, this scheme for a ‘miniature city within the city’ creatively and productively challenges this logic, within the extant framework.

The proposal envisages a diversified and flexible approach to land use mix, which can respond to market conditions as they evolve.  This makes for a robust and buildable vision, addressing all the criteria set out in the competition brief.