Client:
NTAFL
Location:
Darwin, Northern Territory
Features:
Gym, lap and rehabilitation pools, medical facilities, meetings rooms, dormitory style accommodation.
Awards:
AIA NT Indigenous Community Award - 2016
AIA NT Award for Best Educational Architecture - 2016
Master Builders Association (NT) The President's Award - 2015
Master Builders Association (NT) Best Commercial Construction ($10 - $20 million) - 2015

The Michael Long Learning & Leadership Centre is a facility for developing footballers, students and the broader community. The overall concept and form of the space was the inspired by the concept of ‘taking flight’ - the idea that the space will help educate and lift students into the right direction in life and also linking it to the form of a bird.
This development is a unique training and fitness facility incorporating a learning centre and dormitory style accommodation. It also includes a professional gymnasium, lap and rehabilitation pools and spa, change rooms, medical facilities, team meeting rooms, coaching facilities and match day rooms. To offer a holistic program on the site, the facility also includes a number of teaching spaces, secondary to the sporting facilities. The kitchen, education and function rooms have dual purposes on match days by providing additional services to those already available at the stadium. To further enable an intensive camp style of training short stay / hotel style accommodation and student dormitory style accommodation is provided within.

Internally, the overall palette and concept stemmed from cultural influences and references. This allowed for occupants to connect with the space, displaying recognisable images, colours and textures. For example, in the reception zone, each colour panel represents one of the 9 communities who will be using the space. In the cafeteria, hand woven pendant lights by local artists hang and the bench seating is upholstered in fabric known as the ‘gathering’ pattern, also designed by an indigenous artist.

Watch the Michael Long Learning & Leadership Centre Introductory video here