De-coding the High Street

Bachelor of Architectural Design
Semester 2, 2020

Studio leader(s)

  • Edwina Brisbane
  • Rebecca Lewis

Studio description

De-coding the High Street explores how individual works of architecture shape the High Streets of Melbourne. Unique to each other and to Melbourne, High Streets provide a sense of place, order, boundary and connection. However, they are often subject to a common set of planning rules. Such rules can provide leverage for good design outcomes when balanced with social desires and realities of building. But they may also prohibit or limit meaningful propositions.

In drawing a line on the bottom, do we conversely limit the top? Are design guides intrinsic to Melbourne or are we collapsing global trends of good design to create a generic 'every' city?

In this studio, the High Street represents a testing ground or a fragment of the greater Melbourne fabric. Through speculation, you will test how rules shape individual works of architecture and subsequently shape the image of the city.

Map the morphology; de-code the evidence; formulate rules; propose an urban form. You will question the unique urban identity; what it was and what it is, in order to cast your eyes forwards and imagine what it could be.


  • Test and critique the merit of design planning codes
  • Develop the method of mapping
  • Develop a body of knowledge of Melbourne's High Streets
  • Proposed a meaningful work of urban architecture
  • Understand the urban implications of architecture.
  • Develop the capacity of self-directed learning
  • To value process-driven design.

Atlas > Rules > Urban Proposition

Final year projects