Docklands Primary School New School Build

Posted by Owen Williams on Aug 4, 2021 4:39:39 PM
Owen Williams

The new Docklands Primary School was completed in October 2020 and opened for Term 1, 2021. It was built for a growing inner-Melbourne population to alleviate enrolment pressure on surrounding schools and caters for over 500 students from Prep to Grade 6.


During the design process, the school engaged the local community for ideas, passing their feedback onto Cox Architects. The key elements were making the most of the available space, the need for sustainable buildings and the inclusion of natural elements.

Cox Architects met the brief with a 3-story vertical build including innovative rooftop gardens, terraces and open plan classrooms. The open-play spaces create a learning landscape so learning occurs outdoors as well as in. Being located on a busy road, acoustics also played a key part of the build to integrate the school with its surrounding environment.

With administration conveniently located on the ground level, Prep to 6 learning communities were integrated with outdoor learning terraces and are complimented by a library, music room, art rooms, STEM space and an indoor sports hall. 



- Build a new school that integrates with nature and embraces outdoor learning
- Create open plan class spaces including STEM, art, library and music
- Design for an inclusive curriculum offering a wide range of practical and specialist skills

- A warm palette of browns and greys accommodate for social diversity by creating a calming, inclusive space
- Height adjustable tables were chosen to accommodate all year levels
- Round tables with Rondo Ottomans and Lilypad cushions soften the music and library spaces

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Furnishing Docklands Primary

Working with VE Furniture’s account representative, Principal Adam Bright and his team selected height adjustable tables for classroom spaces, practical stools and mobile tables for the art rooms and soft furnishings for the library.

The school chose height adjustable tables to accommodate for all grade levels in the classrooms and mobile tables for flexibility in the specialist spaces.

  • iMove Tables in 720mm heights. Tables cluster together in groups of 2-3 to create large work surfaces, ideal for art rooms.
  • Studiwell Deluxe Tables, with a height range of 565-765mm. These height adjustable tables accommodate for primary school students of all ages.
  • Podz Round Mobile Tables in 720mm high option. This table is designed to be used as a collaborative cluster for four students.


Docklands selected Buzz Chairs and Proform Art Stools for their class set spaces due to their ergonomic nature, whilst Rondo Ottomans and Lilypad Round Cushions were selected for the library and music rooms to add a pop of colour and a touch of comfort.



The warm tones of the carpet and inbuilt joinery was complimented by warm charcoal chairs brightened by white top tables with a black leg. The natural tones create an inviting space, with a pop of colour using blues, yellows and oranges in the soft furnishings to enliven the collaborative spaces.


Technical Information

Complete, 2020
Cox Architecture
Docklands Primary School
Key Consultants
Adam Bright
Monaco Hickey
Peter Clarke Photography


Topics: Classroom, Learning Commons, Primary