St Patrick’s Cathedral Offices and Presbytery

As you walk past St Patrick’s Cathedral in East Melbourne on Albert Street, it’s always a delight to come across the offices and presbytery of the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne.

In 1972 Yuncken and Freeman Architect Roy Simpson created a plan to submerge the new offices into the landscape to avoid any competition with the place of worship. They were able to preserve the perspective.

Roy Simpson when reflecting on his work said, ‘One of the specific requirements was to open up the view towards the cathedral from the Fitzroy Gardens, which was generally seen by the client as more important than retention of St. Patrick’s College on the cathedral site.’ They decided to keep only the College Tower.

The tiered water ponds fronting Albert Street create a landscape allowing reflections of all kind.

| St Patrick’s Cathedral Melbourne, Albert Street, 2011 |

Wasn’t possible to gain immediate access to the central circular courtyard.

Fortunately the architects had commissioned Wolfgang Sievers to document the very unusual subterranean circular building and courtyard within the precinct.

| Wolfgang Sievers, St Patrick’s Cathedral Melbourne, 1973 |

Julia Ritson

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