UQ's new $1.5 million student space.
UQ's new $1.5 million student space.
12 November 2013

University of Queensland School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management students have a new space to develop their skills using innovative, collaborative technology.

The Planning Studio is a $1.5 million student space, which will foster collaboration through its design and facilities, allowing students to work together on projects that address real world problems.

School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management head, Professor James Shulmeister, said planning was a profession that shaped urban places through a practical understanding of how they function.

“The Planning Studio is a practical space for students to apply their knowledge and create links between their current learning and future careers,” Professor Shulmeister said.

“A large number of students, as well as the local governments, development companies and community groups they work with, will benefit from having this dedicated learning space.”

He will open this new space on Wednesday 13 November,

About 300 Bachelor of Regional and Town Planning students will use the studio each year, as will students in the Environmental Management program and Bachelor of Science or Arts geography majors.

The studio incorporates a large, subdividable space with internet-connected pods for group work, several small, soundproofed meeting rooms with presentation facilities, and a casual meeting place for students.

“The facilities in the new Planning Studio are optimised for students to work together and learn effectively,” Professor Shulmeister said.

“The learning approaches in these disciplines involve spatial problem-solving.

“Students need to integrate maps, plans and computers, while working together as a group and with external bodies, to address real planning challenges.”

The studio was designed by dm2 Architecture.

Project architect Samir Hamaiel said the project combined modern technology and the School's environmental focus while retaining the character of UQ's historic Steele Building.

The Planning Studio was funded by the University's Enhanced Student Charge program, the Faculty of Science and the School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management.

The official opening is at 4-6pm Wednesday 13 November 2013, and will feature a group planning exercise to demonstrate the Planning Studio's innovative technology and capabilities.

To register email Helen Smith at pagpem@uq.edu.au.

Media: Professor James Shulmeister, (07) 3346 7010, james.shulmeister@uq.edu.au

Photo opportunity: A group planning activity showcasing the Planning Studio.