University of Otago

Information Services Building

Dunedin, New Zealand

Inspired by our expansion and renovation of the Los Angeles Central Library, the University of Otago engaged us to develop a student precinct master plan for the campus, and to plan, program and design the University’s new Information Services Building (ISB) and an addition to the existing student union. The ISB incorporates the University’s existing main library, while housing new media facilities, instructional technologies, electronic classrooms, computer clusters, group study rooms, library collection storage and staff areas. As sustainability played a critical role in the project’s evolution, the building elevations were designed for specific conditions of solar orientation and elemental forces. A natural ventilation system is coordinated with the mechanical systems by automated fenestrations, and the multi-level mezzanine provides a stack affect that moves air through the facility.

Project Data

2000 (phase I); 2001 (phase II)

Program & Highlights

Multimedia facilities
Group study rooms
Smart classrooms


2004 New Zealand Institute of Architects (NZIA), National Award for Architecture

2003 Property Council of New Zealand Building Awards, Excellence in Education and Arts

2003 Property Council of New Zealand Building Awards, EnergyWise Commercial Building Award

2003 Otago Chamber of Commerce, City Development Award

2003 NZIA Resene Southern Local Awards for Architecture, Award for Community & Cultural/Education Architecture

Elizabeth Arcurl, “Information Services Building, University of Otago,” Architectural Record, August 2002


NZ Architect: Opus International Consultants Ltd.
Contractor: Naylor Love
Project Manager: OCTA Associates Ltd.
Structural Engineer: Hadley & Robinson
Mechanical/Electrical: Arup & Partners
Photographer: John Gollings