Hume City Council: Hume Global Learning Centre

Mar 10, 2013 by     Comments Off    Posted under: Capital Projects Over $1M

The Hume Global Learning Centre – Craigieburn (HGLCC) is Hume City Council’s new $18M community learning venue. The stunning new centre offers the growing local community a space to learn, share knowledge and inspire creativity.  What started off as an ambitious vision has become a living testament to the power of innovation and collaboration – a world-class facility dedicated to enhancing lifelong learning opportunities. The centre is a great example of flexible learning spaces of the future and has become a focal point and a hub of activity in Hume City.


The design vision for the new facility was to create a contemporary community library and community centre which would become an information hub and meeting place for the expanding Craigieburn community. It is anticipated that the facility would include other facilities including learning facilities, childcare services, meeting rooms, an IT training room and multi-purpose function rooms.
Opened in May 2012, the architecturally designed two story building houses the world-class Craigieburn Library, a gallery, an occasional care program, café, commercial kitchen, Council’s Craigieburn Customer Service Centre, meeting rooms, an IT training room and a state-of-the-art conference and training centre. The centre is complimented by outdoor learning areas and landscaping that is in synch with the local environs.

The HGLCC project has and will continue to deliver long-term positive benefits and help build stronger learning opportunities for the Craigieburn community. The HGLCC also provides access to career resource and has free and universal access to IT infrastructure, digital literacy and technological resources. The centre delivers a wide range of programs, events and activities that support and promote literacy in the community.
Five key principles were identified to drive innovative design and best practice engineering principles and technologies: ‘Community’, ‘Sustainability’, ‘Flexibility’, ‘Connectivity and Accessibility’ and ‘Education and Learning’. The centre has been designed to showcase Council’s values and aspirations towards the environment and sustainable design. Rammed earth (components of which were sourced from local quarries); timber and large full-length glass walls make up the building frame.
The final outcome is a considered approach that minimises Council’s environmental footprint using design that provides quality benefits such as fresh air, natural light, considered acoustic control and minimal environmental pollutants.

The landscaping has been designed to create an engaging experience which complements and responds to the designed functions of the building. A variety of structural elements, textures, raw materials, native plants and colours have been used in the landscape to reflect the forms and materials of the building and water sensitive urban design, such as rain gardens in the car park, features throughout the landscape design.

The HGLCC has created enormous benefits to the local community including, but not limited to:
• Creation of employment opportunities, both in initial planning and construction and in ongoing operations of new facilities
• Providing access to learning opportunities and information resources for all ages
• Enhancing the liveability of the Craigieburn region
• Creating a unique and distinctive learning facility that will attract both domestic and international tourists
• Contributing to community capacity building.
• Breaking down barriers of age, ethnicity, culture, socio-economic status, language and geography.
• Information and IT skills.
• A supportive learning experience
• Providing a cultural hub and focal point for the community
• Providing social inclusion opportunities for all
Ensuring that the project was delivered at the highest quality, on time and on budget while meeting its community obligations, Council implemented project planning, risk management and a great team (including Council staff, architects, external project managers, builders etc.).
A managing contractor construction contract model was used to enable the early start required by the Government grant which then allowed design to be finalised during the construction period. Additionally external project management was utilised to ensure client/architect/builder relationships fostered the best outcome.
This team was able to overcome several challenges such as: tight deadlines for the start of construction as a requirement of a $9.478M Government grant; tonnes of rock lying beneath the surface and the consistent inclement weather that was experienced (causing several floods onsite). Despite these and many more challenges, Council was able to deliver a stunning world class facility dedicated to enhancing learning opportunities – one that Council and the community are immensely proud of.
In 2007/2008 Council took the bold decision to invest in a new multi-million community facility rather than attempt to reinvigorate and redevelop an existing out-dated and ageing library which would have cost far less.

Hume City Council’s development of the new Global Learning Centre in Craigieburn, incorporating a library and many other complimentary and co-located uses stems from Hume City Council’s overall vision for ‘a prosperous, sustainable and vibrant city; renowned for social justice, lifelong learning and community inclusion’.

Contribution made by Hume City Council
Collaborative teamwork was essential to the organizational success in the planning, construction and delivery of the HGLCC. The HGLCC Project Control Group (PCG) was made up of a large cross-organisational team of 35 staff across 12 departments who worked closely with a number of external experts to research and deliver this ambitious and highly important project to the local community.
The HGLCC project was a standout example of the power of collaboration and innovation. Within the larger HGLCC PCG, many smaller working groups were formed to focus on specific project components, such as construction, contracts, information systems and audio-visual, library collection, library shelving, furniture, signage, communication, landscaping and so on, each group with a leader in their field of expertise ensuring that everything ran as smoothly as it could. The willingness, ability and drive for excellence in all working groups meant that Council was able to achieve project milestones and deliver the centre within very tight time constraints and to very high standards.
Team members were always willing to provide additional support to ensure tasks were completed on time. Through this collaborative approach, the HGLCC opening was a major success, with over 3000 people attending. Council has had wonderful feedback from the community about the building and the wonderful services and opportunities it delivers for Hume City.

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