- 1962-1965 (Creation)
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14 architectural drawings ; sizes vary
Name of creator
James Peter Birrell was born in Melbourne on the 24 October 1928. He was educated at the Melbourne Technical College (1945-1949) while working for the Victorian State Works Department (1947), for R.G. Warren (1948) and the Commonwealth Works Department (1948-1950). He transferred into a fourth year course in the School of Architecture at the University of Melbourne. Following his graduation in 1950, he returned to the Commonwealth Works Department and worked for them in Melbourne, Canberra and Darwin. He was appointed Architect in charge of the Architectural Branch in the Brisbane City Council (1955-1961). He resigned to become Staff Architect to the University of Queensland (1961-1966). He commenced his own practice in 1966, with offices at various times in Brisbane, Townsville, Port Moresby, and Maroochydore with various partners (including Lorant Kulley, Philip Conn, Richard Stringer and Lindsay Mack). He died on 20 September 2019, aged 90.
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Main Library was part of the Great Court buildings designed by Hennessy and Hennessy in 1935-1936. It consisted of two floors with a glass ceiling in the light well in the centre. Main Building was designed to be extended with an additional three floors, with high ceilings and a large light well in the centre. When the Library had insufficient space for students and books it was decided to go ahead with the extension of three more floors, as specified by Hennessy and Hennessy. Birrell proposed five additional floors instead of the three, the installation of passenger lifts, fluorescent lighting, and air-conditioning. Birrell was responsible for the internal arrangement and finishes. This file comprises 15 plans for alterations and additions to Main Library. Includes: sketch of lower ground floor (now Level 1), working drawings for 1st to 5th floors (now Level 3 to Level 7), stair details and compactus shelving.
Main Library was later known as Undergraduate Library; with the construction of Central Library in 1971 its name was changed to Duhig Building; and later, around 2000, to Duhig Tower.
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Related units of description
East, John W. (2006). A brief history of the University of Queensland Library. Greenslopes, Australia: J.W. East.
Oversize folder 19
Previously housed as Folder 25 A13.01-15
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- University of Queensland (Subject)
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Created, Linda Justo, 10-Feb-2021
East, John W. (2012). The Duhig Building: Changing Configurations of a Library Space at the University of Queensland, accessed online via eSpace on 12 January 2021.