Saturday, October 15, 2011

Canberra Spring

Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh will tour the Floriade flower show here in Canberra next Thursday afternoon. It is a good time to visit Canberra, as shown by the number of distinguished guests (US President Obama arrives in early November). Last Thursday there was a delegation from the EU talking on climate change at the Australia National Unviersity.

As I had to be at the symposium by 9AM I caught the Route 3 Bus. This winds its way through the university Campus. It was a cool, clear, crisp morning. The tall native gum trees were tall and gray-green, between the short oaks with bright green new foliage. The lawns were manicured.

Surprisingly you can see few buildings on the campus from the bus route. The campus is designed for walking, with all the main buildings along walking paths, with playing fields alongside. The buildings are mostly limited to less than the height of the eucalyptus trees, so that from the road you just get glimpses of buildings between the foliage.

In amongst the older brick buildings there are bold new designs being constructed (see the time lapse video of the biology building being built). But I suspect these trendy looking designs will date very quickly (the Undergraduate Teaching Building has an overly complex, inflexible design). The Ursula Hall Laurus Wing shipping container building, is likely to be of more lasting significance.

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