As part of the pre-New Academic Street works at City campus, a new stairway entrance to Building 8, off Swanston Street, has been constructed.

Project: Building 8, Level 3 entrance

Architect: Lyons in conjunction with MvS Architects

Commenced: 14 December 2014

Completed: 2 March 2015

Opening on day one of Semester 1, the new Swanston Street stairway has already welcomed tens of thousands of students, staff and visitors into the City campus.

Pedestrians are using the new stairway to stream into Building 8, where they are greeted by a campus map and quick, easy access to the heart of the campus.

Using bluestone as a core material and with a dramatic new concrete balustrade, the entry offers another access point to the Swanston Library off Swanston Street and direct access to the former level 4 café, which, subject to RMIT Council sign off on the project mid-year, will house The Hall.

Importantly, the new entry, one of three planned campus entries off Swanston Street, includes a new disabled access lift to level 2. It also alleviates pressure on the lifts in Building 8, which is part of the overall plan to improve pedestrian traffic through the precinct.

Paul Minifie, of Minifie Van Schaik Architects, said he was very pleased with the entry’s already popular usage.

“There is the feeling that if it hasn’t always been there, it should have been. It’s got the quality of being the right thing for the building and people like using it.”

Delivering on one of New Academic Street’s key benefits, the stairway provides a stronger connection between the heart of the city campus and Melbourne’s CBD.

And for the first time, RMIT’s City Fitness team can enjoy natural light at their gym’s reception desk.

RMIT City Fitness’ Phillip Pavlou said the new entrance had helped to integrate the gym and the city campus into the Swanston Street thoroughfare.

“It has helped to increase exposure of the gym to RMIT students, staff and beyond.”

The new entry also includes a glass display cabinet that will feature New Academic Street images, updates and information during the life of the project.

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