Feature image for the article 'Leading the Design for Indigenous and Tropical Health in Northern Territory'

Leading design firm Hames Sharley has been recently commissioned for the $45 million Menzies School of Health Research in Darwin.

The school will be constructed on two separate sites, (Royal Darwin Hospital and Charles Darwin University) and involves the expansion and upgrade of the existing research facilities with the aim of improving health services and enabling high quality research into Indigenous health, tropical diseases and other health problems facing families in the Territory and the tropics.

Hames Sharley Director, Keith Savage says the design team will be seeking to achieve high environmental design credentials and reflect the project’s international standing as a leader in Indigenous and tropical health research.

“Iconic designs which are environmentally friendly, unique to Darwin and responsive to the tropical savannah location are fundamental to the design of this project. The communities in which Menzies serve will be reflected in the design with inspiration drawing from their cultural and heritage backgrounds,” Mr Savage says.

“Aiming to provide a higher level of research expertise in Darwin, the developments will feature PC2 and PC3 laboratories, lecture theatres, conference areas, common rooms, open spaces and a café to encourage interaction, collaboration and facilitate world-class research.”

The federally funded project (Health and Hospitals Fund - Department of Health and Ageing, Northern Territory Government and Charles Darwin University) will enable Menzies to continue vital medical research to discover better ways to prevent, diagnose, treat disease and work closely with the communities most affected. Menzies work includes research into Malaria, TB and Rheumatic heart disease, tropical infectious diseases like Melioidosis and Leishmania, and the health of Indigenous Australians, with a strong focus on youth and children.

This significant project reinforces Hames Sharley’s position as a leader in the design of medical, research and health institutions within Australia. Hames Sharley is currently working on similar major medical and research projects, such as the Western Australian Institute for Medical Research (WA), Institute for Photonics and Advanced Sensing (SA), Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Hospital (QLD) and Blacktown Hospital (NSW) within Australia.