The project management of a ground-breaking building: Fairbrothers’ Dylan Graham on The University of Tasmania’s Rivers Edge development

As part of the University of Tasmania’s Northern Transformation Project Program, the $45.5m River’s Edge development is a jewel in the crown of the state’s new education precinct. Home to the schools of Humanities, Social Sciences, Law, Education and Business, the four storey River’s Edge building was designed by Wardle Studio and built by local firm Fairbrother with spectacular views of the lakekeller/North Esk River. Overseeing the construction of this extraordinary building was Fairbrother’s Project Manager for Construction for North West Tasmania, Dylan Graham.

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How driving past an old shed inspired Tasmania’s Home of the Year

On a stretch of road in northern Tasmania there’s a little shed. It has a silvered Tasmanian Oak exterior that is typical of the apple sheds, pickers huts and shearing sheds that dot the Tasmanian valleys. The hardwood fence-lapped, untreated boards have been structurally sound for decades. Murray Griffiths is the Director, Designer and Project Manager of My Build Collective, a design and construction company based in Tasmania. Murray kept driving past this shed on the way to the site of a building he was designing. He wanted the new building which was to be built on the site of an old shipyard, to look like it belonged.

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Merritt Joinery: A story of family and expert craftsmanship

Amanda Hardinge grew up in the cabinet making and joining industry. Her father and his business partner started Merritt and Fair in the 1980’s making custom joinery in their backyards. Amanda was the ‘rack stick girl’ pushing racks of timber around for her dad after school and on weekends. Amanda’s plan wasn’t to work in the company, she trained as a beauty therapist, but business management interested her. Today she is CEO of Merritt Joinery, with her brothers as Directors and together they are continuing the family legacy.

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Professor Greg Nolan, architect, researcher, problem solver and raconteur on the most asked questions about Tasmanian Timber

Professor Greg Nolan arrived at the Original Thinkers podcast studio on his push bike, in his high visibility vest, a vest that has no doubt seen its share of building sites, sawmills and forestry coupes. As part of this series on Tasmania’s timber supply chain, we needed a ‘Problem Solver’, a trusted expert that could speak to the questions most often asked by architects. As a beloved professor at the University of Tasmania’s School of Architect and Design and Director of the University’s Centre for Sustainable Architecture with Wood, Greg’s knowledge is unsurpassed.

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A conversation with Dr Louise Wallis: scientist, senior lecturer and problem solver at the Centre for Sustainable Architecture with Wood

It was a belief that architects needed more hands-on experience that drew academic Dr Louise Wallis to Tasmania. At the time the University of Tasmania (UTAS) was one of the only schools that allowed their architecture students to design and make in their workshop. Louise found herself engrossed in the School of Architecture and Design, teaching and being in the workshop with students, helping them to be able to craft and understand the weight, the connections and properties of timber.

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Scott Flett: Blending tradition, innovation, and craftsmanship

With ties to Tasmania, Sydney and Adelaide, Founding Director of Flett Architecture, Scott Flett brings a unique perspective to his practice, informed by a diverse range of influences and experiences. As the recipient of the 2023 Australian Institute of Architects Emerging Architect Prize for Tasmania, Scott’s journey into architecture has been characterised by a passion for making and a commitment to craftsmanship. From his groundbreaking roofing solution to his innovative use of timber in projects, Scott has demonstrated a commitment to pushing the boundaries of architectural practice while honoring tradition and sustainability.

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