Monash students’ un-bee-lievable design wins architecture competition

Paul Eyers
By Paul Eyers
2 Min Read

Students from Monash University have caused a buzz in Melbourne after winning a major Australian design competition.

The Monash team, Hexad Studio,  brought home the honey at the PrefabAUS Conference’ 2023 Fleetwood Challenge Cup for its beehive-shaped plans for a proposed East Malvern apartment residence, winning the Peoples Choice award.

The student’s design took inspiration from bees and their habitat to showcase interconnected three-dimensional hexagon modules similar to a honeycomb. 

The aspiration behind this nature-like structure is for residents to add and remove modules to adapt living spaces as required, similar to how a worker bee would alter its hive. 

Team lead Olivia Basilec said the award would help highlight the benefits of cost-effective and sustainable architecture. 

“Modular building and prefabrication are still so under-utilised in Australia,” she said. 

“This competition was a great opportunity for us to learn more about the potential for real-world applications.”

The Fleetwood Challenge Cup allows teams from universities across Australia to show the value of prefabrication and modular buildings and find solutions to problems within traditional construction methods.

Fleetwood Australia CEO Bruce Nicholson was impressed by the potential shown within Hexad Studio’s design. 

“Hexad Studio has come up with a striking honeycomb design that points back to nature and has the potential to make modular living even more adaptable,” he said.

“There’s a real sense of innovation and inspiration that shines through in all entries.” 

For more information about the 2023 Fleetwood Challenge Cup, visit their website. 

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Paul Eyers has worked as a journalist for a range of media publishers including News Corp and Network Ten. He has also worked outside of Australia, including time spent with ABS-CBN in the Philippines. Stepping away from the media, Paul spent five years sharpening his tools in construction - building his skill set and expertise within the trade industry. His diverse experiences and unique journey have equipped him with an insider view of Australia’s construction game to dig deep into the big stories.