Theatre 1

Build your expert knowledge with a combination of keynote presentations, panel discussions and practical debates onsite at DesignBUILD.

We’re all about collaboration at DesignBUILD and the 2017 seminar theatre was unlike anything you’ve seen before!

As part of DesignBUILD RAW, each Seminar Theatre was designed and constructed by the next generation of industry stars. These constructions, along with our Incubator feature and bar concepts, offered a look into what the future collaborators of our industry have in store for us.

Wednesday 3rd May

Large-scale venues come with unique challenges in their interior design. How do you create atmosphere in expansive spaces? How do you enhance the user journey? As experts in this field, Populous ensure venues provide a great atmospheric experience along with being functional for thousands of people.


By their very nature, successful convention centres draw audiences to a city, again and again. New thinking in the design of these large civic buildings is helping to redefine the conference experience, as well as connecting venues to the local community and showcasing the best cities like Sydney have to offer.


Back by popular demand the Lunch + Learn sessions return in 2017. Formulated specifically to help continue the conversation beyond the theatre walls, this session includes an interdisciplinary panel discussion immediately followed by a catered lunch to encourage multi-disciplinary networking and help inspire your next collaboration. Lunch is included in the ticket price.

This session will explore how to get the most out of your cross-disciplinary team to maximise efficiency not just during the build process but throughout the entire life cycle of the construction. The panel will include representatives from Master Builders Australia and JBA Urban.


To compete in a competitive global market, Brisbane will take advantage of its distinctive attributes and cultivate a unique identity. Embracing its desirable climate, Council has prepared the Buildings that Breathe Design Guide to provide a shared vision for achieving subtropical building design in Brisbane. New high-density buildings in Brisbane will embrace the subtropical climate by opening up to cooling breezes, providing lush landscaping, shade and comfort. Showcasing the highest standards of design and construction, these developments will contribute to Australia’s New World City identity by creating an enviable and lush urban environment that attracts investment and tourism, celebrates our lifestyle and stimulates economic activity.

An initiative of the City Centre Master Plan 2014, the non-statutory guide provides an overarching vision for new high-density buildings and inspirational design benchmark for architects, planners, developers, property professionals and the broader community. The Design Guide is a user-friendly, multi-dimensional tool underpinned by eight design elements that have been identified as key considerations to creating good subtropical architecture. Illustrating best-practice examples and easy-to-understand design elements, practitioners will be encouraged to use the guide to deliver buildings that breathe in our city.


New building technologies aren’t just changing the way buildings look, but the way the construction industry gets things done. This session looks at a range of new near-term construction and material technologies and explore how they will effect the building site, and create new industry roles and opportunities for design. 


Thursday 4th May

Graeme Spencer is a Senior Associate at international design studio HASSELL, with more than 20 years’ experience in delivering highly complex facades systems for large-scale projects with design innovation and technical excellence.In his role as HASSELL Team Leader on the International Convention Centre Sydney, Graeme will provide insight into the diverse range of innovative facade types across the precinct, where the team achieved solutions to a tight programme and budget. Graeme will also discuss the concept, development and execution of the unique crystalline curtain wall and reflective porcelain facade systems of the International Convention Centre Sydney.


By their very nature, successful convention centres draw audiences to a city, again and again. New thinking in the design of these large civic buildings is helping to redefine the conference experience, as well as connecting venues to the local community and showcasing the best cities like Sydney have to offer.


Back by popular demand the Lunch + Learn sessions return in 2017. Formulated specifically to help continue the conversation beyond the theatre walls, this session includes an interdisciplinary panel discussion immediately followed by a catered lunch to encourage multi-disciplinary networking and help inspire your next collaboration. Lunch is included in the ticket price.

This session will explore the effects that climate change will have on sustainability in the built environment and outdoor design. The panel will include representatives from the Australian Institute of Building, Tract Consultants and Master Builders Australia.


An investigation of the opportunities offered by an iterative design strategy in various stages of the architectural design process from concept development through to prototype. The use of iteration as a vehicle for design exploration is discussed and illustrated using examples from an intensive design elective held at the University of Sydney. The elective was held in February 2017 and run as a charrette style student competition to produce designs for the DesignBUILD RAW Speaker’s Corner and Bar.


In winning the 2016 Australia Award for Urban Design - Delivered Outcome (large scale), the Sydney Park Water Re-Use Project highlighted the potential to expect a lot more from our infrastructure projects.  A panel representing the multi-disciplinary design and client team will reflect on the collaborative opportunities that our major city-making projects present to work in a true professional round table, where no discipline rules and where outcomes blur the lines between public domain, infrastructure and art.


Friday 5th May

This session is aimed at informing the audience about the current NCC Requirements and examples of issues the industry is experiencing after the VBA Industry Alert dealing with external walls and the CSIRO “Fire safety guideline for external walls” have been published. Ways forward and possible solutions will be discussed.  


The HASSELL + Populous team focused on maintaining a tight collaborative strategy, underpinned by a strong effort to remain very clear about the broader master plan and architectural concepts. As an international profiled project, ICC Sydney represented a clearly articulated design intent, in a way the entire project team could pursue, that is both cost effective and delivered under a specific construction program. HASSELL + Populous will present design outcomes across the precinct which encapsulates those key design outcomes and the journey of one small but very significant element of the project from its inception to its delivery for this internationally applauded project.


Back by popular demand the Lunch + Learn sessions return in 2017. Formulated specifically to help continue the conversation beyond the theatre walls, this session includes an interdisciplinary panel discussion immediately followed by a catered lunch to encourage multi-disciplinary networking and help inspire your next collaboration. Lunch is included in the ticket price.

This session will explore how to address the gap in project management, despite the advances in construction technology. The panel will include representatives including Tract Consultants and Master Builders Australia.


Presenting the data that informed Liveable Sydney 2016, this session will explore the intangible elements, including factors contributing to liveability and how improvements to the current strategic planning environment could deliver higher quality outcomes and places that people love.  


Where to next

Theatre 2

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Speaker Directory

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DesignBUILD RAW

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