University of Newcastle 'Q Building', New South Wales | Australia

The University of Newcastle's 'Q-Building' is located in the Honeysuckle district. It has become the second home for students of creative subjects. The four-storey, exceptionally sustainable and innovative building was officially opened on 7 October 2022. It boasts a unique solid wood design and is the first wooden multi-storey building built in Newcastle.


Project New university building
Location Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia
Opening October 2022
Architecture EJE Architecture
Construction company Hansen Yuncken
Engineering Northrop
Material use 540 m³ of binderholz CLT BBS, 240 m³ of binderholz glulam and 115 m² of binderholz 3 layer solid wood panels


The state-of-the-art building houses studios and lecture rooms in which the subjects of Communication, Media, Film and TV, Event Production, Sound and Music, Animation and Visual Arts are taught. Moreover, the University’s Integrated Innovation Hub is also located in this building. The latter serves as an innovation centre supporting the success of innovators, start-ups and entrepreneurs.

Innovative in more than one way

The ‘Q Building’ is a solid wood construction with a concrete core. It was built using binderholz CLT BBS, binderholz glulam supports and beams as well as binderholz 3 layer solid wood panels. Moreover, binderholz also supplied the connecting elements. Most of the CLT BBS elements are exposed. Using wood has paid off as the solid wood construction method lends the project, which is located in the harbour district, a unique flair.

Its most impressive element is its CLT BBS staircase that spans almost 8 metres. It was manufactured and lifted into place on site.

The use of solid wood to sequester carbon is only one of the instances of innovation and environmental consciousness that run through the building like a common thread. Material use was reduced to a minimum. The building is also equipped with systems that catch, store and reuse rain water. Its eastern, northern and western façades were equipped with a glass system that automatically changes its tint to respond to heat and glare. At 344 panes, it is regarded the largest system of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere. On top of that, 104 solar panels were installed on the roof.

New South Wales’ first certified 6-star Green Star building

The ‘Q Building’ was awarded Green Star’s 6-star seal in the ‘Design & As Built’ category, making it the region's first building to receive the Green Building Council of Australia’s top certification.

“It's a great success for our University, shows our commitment to sustainability and proves that we are implementing the UN’s sustainable development goals by focussing on energy and carbon consumption as well as waste and recycling,” says Alex Zelinsky, the University of Newcastle’s President.


Newcastle MBA Excellence in Building Awards

Green Star 'Design & As Built'

Photos: © Murray McKean © binderholz