Swanston Academic Building

The Swanston Academic Building, together with RMIT Design Hub, showcases the University’s $700 million investment in cutting-edge educational facilities.

The Swanston Academic Building acts as a catalyst to accelerate the cross-pollination of new ideas. There are many shared learning spaces fitted out with the latest technology, from a high-speed wireless network to LCD screens that can be accessed by multiple users. This new building is also committed to sustainability, with reduced energy and water use, and has been accredited with a 5-star green rating. It’s RMIT’s vision for tomorrow that you can see today.

SAB Building interior SAB Building interior

A new era in learning, teaching and research

The world of learning and research as we know it will see significant change over the next two decades. In a world of ubiquitous technology every space is a learning place – within the university and the city at large. Students, armed with mobile devices in a completely wireless environment, will colonise space in new ways.

Swanston Academic Building anticipates future practices and will accelerate the uptake of new ideas and the adoption of new approaches to the learning, teaching and research experience. The experience of the new building is one of being connected to people and activity through the use of space and volume. The activity of learning is highly visible and on display, rather than closed, private and hidden. The spaces encourage the creative and intellectual transfer of knowledge and lead users to interact in multiple settings with multiple information sources.

Above all the new building is vibrant, engaging and all about connecting people.

Excellence in sustainable design and innovation

The new Swanston Academic Building, Cutting edge urban design, 5 star green rating, shared learning spaces and wifi throughout the building.

RMIT is strongly committed to transforming its own built environment to create sustainable and resilient cities. The SAB is an exemplar of Australian design excellence achieving a Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) 5-star Green Star Education Design rating. The sustainability features in SAB improve user comfort, resulting in higher quality learning outcomes, greater student engagement and space utilisation at an unprecedented level.

Download the sustainability features booklet (PDF 4419KB)

About Lyons Architects

Lyons Architects were commissioned to design and project manage the development of SAB. The firm is committed to the craft of architecture and urban design as an intellectual construct within a local and global culture. Lyons has completed numerous large scale commissions for government public and private sector client groups.
Visit the Lyons Architects website

SAB Awards and Recognition

  • Australian Construction Achievement Award (2013)
  • Victorian Public Architecture Award (2013)
  • National Public Architecture Award (2013)
  • Victorian Premier’s Sustainability Award - Infrastructure and Buildings (2013)
  • Shortlisted World Building of the Year Award (2013)
  • Property Council of Australia's Innovation and Excellence Awards - Victorian Development of the Year (2013)
  • Property Council of Australia's Innovation and Excellence Awards - John Holland Award for Best Public Building (2013)
aboriginal flag
torres strait flag

Acknowledgement of country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business. - Artwork created by Louisa Bloomer