Childcare Centre Architecture SERVICES In Melbourne

Co-lab Architecture is a leading provider of architectural services for childcare centres in Victoria. We have worked in the sector since our conception and have designed multiple centres across the state for both non-profit and commercial operators. Our time in the sector has allowed us to build a good relationship with the Victoria Department of Education and Training (DET), the body responsible for licensing childcare centres. Our experience means we understand what DET require, essential knowledge in a sector that does not have a design guide and where town planning and building permits do not capture all departmental requirements. We are able to help our clients navigate the planning process, including meeting with DET for every childcare project to preempt any potential issues or alterations.

Our clients include franchisors, commercial developers, land owners, syndicates, accountants and smaller development companies. We work closely with operators, drawing on our depth of experience in the sector to balance the varied needs of multiple audiences and users including parents, owners, developers, operators, councils, educators, and children. Our collaborative design process ensures designs meet the quality standard in a way that serves all stakeholders and results in structures that are both practical and of high quality.

Co-lab utilises leading technology to optimise collaboration with our clients. This includes developing a detailed virtual model of each project. This allows each client to interact with their structure, drawing on this experience to highlight additional changes required to meet their needs.

 Co-lab Architecture is registered with the ARBV, and are members of the Australian Institute of Architects and the Australian Childcare Alliance Victoria.  


To ensure your project is completed to your requirements, we provide services throughout the entire architectural process. The Co-lab Architecture team supports you from initial concept design through to contractor selection and contract administration, including negotiating the town planning system.


1. Return Brief

In the childcare space, our process is adapted to fit the needs of the sector. Because we know that every centre is different. In addition to the standard outlined steps, we develop a return brief for each individual operator.

 After interviewing the childcare provider and their team we produce a return brief, detailing everything for the space that was outlined in the interviews. These interviews result in a more comprehensive and in-depth plan. By talking to our clients, we are able to draw out fine detail such as data points, ceiling fans and joinery.

 This return brief is used to ensure all required detail is included in our drawings and the virtual model. In addition, it is used in the final sign off of all documentation prior to any construction. The level of detail used means the return brief often becomes part of the client’s quality assurance documentation.  

2. Concept Design

Collaboration means better design. At Co-lab we begin every project with a design workshop, bringing together a team of architects and designers to respond to each brief in a unique way. 


If needed, our experienced team are able to communicate with the local council on behalf of the client. This includes working with the assigned town planner on any objections or queries, as well as checking council obligations. 


We then develop detailed working drawings that show precisely how the building should be constructed. These are used to apply for a building permit. 


Drawing on our extensive experience in the sector, we support the client to choose a builder and negotiate a contract. We do this by obtaining quotes and comparing inclusion and exclusions, mediating between client and contractor to reach mutually agreeable terms


We inspect the site throughout the build, independently evaluating variations and additional construction costs, ensuring the contract and design are being met. .   

Our team of architects have successfully delivered numerous projects across multi residential, commercial, childcare, health, education and hospitality sectors.