St Catherines College Singleton

St Catherines is a Catholic School of 800 students in junior, middle and senior school, ages ranging from 5 to 18 years.

The School comprised an existing middle and senior school housed in buildings ranging in age from 100 years to 30 years old, with facilities that were equally aged.


The Programme

The first and second stage of the project was undertaken by carste from 2003 through to its dedication in 2006. The new facilities included an Administration building, Student amenities and Building Services areas, a new 2 storey Art, Design and Technology and Food Technology learning areas. A Library and Materials Science building was also constructed.

Stage 2 included the construction of 3 new Science Learning areas and Preparation Room together with and adjoining Music suite and 3 music practice rooms. This completed the middle and senior school, together with some refurbishment of the older buildings which necessitated the removal of existing Science and Music Rooms and conversion to General Purpose Learning Areas.



The Result

The buildings were in the vicinity of the heritage listed Sisters of Mercy Convent and necessitated design sensitive to the context of this group of buildings. Parapets and general building form was conceived with this criteria high in priority. Design in these realms are the forte of carste, and the resultant school complex sits comfortably adjacent the neo gothic structures that comprised the school and convent.

The internal environment was conceived with not only the curriculum criteria as a driver, but also to create a stimulating learning environment. Colour played an important part in delivering a successful result and the final finishes are playfully colourful, and coordinated for visual stimulation beyond mere fashion.

The building group ultimately forms a coherent whole when combined with the extant buildings and the Convent in close proximity.



The BER component

The Primary school is currently located on the southern side of Queen Street, Singleton. The school desires to amalgamate all stages of the curriculum and child development on the one site under the one administration.

The eastern side of the site of the High School is free for development of the Primary School and is an element that has been taken as one to complete the network of buildings that form the whole of School.

The computer generated images delineate the scheme designed and adopted by the client for the new Primary School to be developed.

There are not the heritage issues on this section of the site, however congruence witht eh prevailing architectural style of buildings is considered to be an important facvet of any intervention on the site.


We have adopted the same network arrangement developed in the first and second stages, however, the character of the buildings is being differentiated from these prior developments as the new buildings relate more closely to the newer buildings on the site.

The development includes the expansion of the Administration area for the additional staff, and the construction of a two stream primary school with resources area, covered outdoor learning areas (COLA) and two Kindergarten spaces with the maximum amount of sheltered play space which is safe and secure and discrete from the remainder of the School.