The original Faculty of Engineering & Information Technology (now the College of Engineering and Computer Science) was established in 1993 and comprised of the (then) Department of Engineering and the Department of Computer Science. These two areas were in separate buildings facing each other over an expanse of land and carpark. The physical separation contributed to a lack of interaction between areas. The Ian Ross building provided a link and now houses the college office, which was previously located outside the area. It also provides additional research, teaching and office space for both engineering and IT and is now a new and significant front door to the College.
Ian Ross fuses the different aspects of both areas into a single unified whole expressing the links between technology, environment and art. The result is a highly contextual and sensitive building. A major feature, symbolic of the link between Engineering and Information Technology is the sculpture, which forms the main entry to the faculty. Aptly titled “Fusion”, the sculpture by Australian Artist – Geoff Bartlett – forms a dramatic portico, appearing to support a cantilevered room over the entry.
Four large chimney stacks soaring over the central core of the main roof signal the environmental aspects of this project. The Ian Ross Building uses passive environmental systems as a means of providing occupant thermal comfort and was awarded a Sustainable Architecture Award by the Australian Institute of Architects.