A ﬂexible new building designed by Sydney architects Allen Jack+Cottier (AJ+C) to accommodate one of the world’s most significant collections of religious texts and the nation’s oldest theological college has opened in Sydney.
Officially unveiled today, the Moore Theological College Learning and Teaching Centre at 1 King Street Newtown is carefully designed to house a combined collection of more than 119,000 published works – including some of the rarest religious texts in existence.
AJ+C Project Director Mark Louw said the ﬁ rm and College had collaborated to create a striking, sandstone and glass building optimising the campus’ prominent corner site and creating an immediately recognisable new gateway to the city’s inner west.
“For so many years the College was rendered almost invisible because of the low-key nature of their existing buildings,” Mr Louw said. “The Learning and Teaching Centre aims to boost the College’s proﬁ le, and transform its already highly regarded public library into an internationally recognised and accessible facility to support higher education and research.”
Designed over six levels above ground and one below, the building accommodates a 430-seat lecture theatre cum hall, 222 reﬂective study spaces, 100 collaborative study spaces, eight tutorial rooms, and offices for all faculty space in the one building.
“It was critical the building sensitively manage Australia’s oldest library of this kind, including books transported on the First Fleet and the country’s leading collection of resources for the study of religion – particularly Christianity and Judaism but increasingly Islam, Aboriginal spirituality and other religions.”