University of Queensland Fitness & Aquatic Centre

University of Queensland Fitness & Aquatic Centre

The complex creates a generous courtyard space formed by airy timber structures with an appropriate fit to the Queensland regional context.

The UQ Fitness & Aquatic Centre consists of three main buildings arranged around a large landscaped space containing a new 25-metre pool. The buildings are linked by a well-scaled open veranda that forms the circulation route around the edge of the courtyard. Externally, the buildings are wrapped together with a vertical batten screen that follows the perimeter of the complex, providing a textured edge that unifies the whole. One building contains a large gymnasium/multipurpose space and a kiosk and office area. Another building contains the amenities, store rooms and plant, while an outdoor function area is housed in a large open pavilion-like structure.

Light batten screens trace the inner edge of the central courtyard and a light translucent sheet roof, floating above the beams, creates an open but sheltered spatial character that evokes Queensland’s early timber building traditions.

With its timber textures and filigree shade the complex produces a languorous and sensual atmosphere well suited to its functions of health and recreation.

The emphasis on passive design and a simple elegance of structural form met the client’s need for an efficient and economical complex with a relaxing human scale, which will make a lasting and important contribution to the life of the Gatton campus. The new pool complex replaces an existing facility built in the 1950s, with the previous pool perimeter traced out in the landscaping of the central courtyard space.

Project Sheet

Project Summary

The University of Queensland
Gatton QLD
Floor area
Original value


  • AIA Regional Commendation - Darling Downs

Also in this category