Creative Article

My creative article is a satirical play on the harsh realities of student life and the ways in which the NAS project aims to improve them. It is intended for publication via RMIT student magazine Catalyst, preferably online though easily modified for print (see PDF). Categorised into a list-style format typical of online content today, the piece finds the humour in NAS by drawing on key project features and positioning them in relation to student pain-points and pop-culture references. This creative approach aims to influence RMIT students by speaking to them at a grassroots level in a familiar tone, and making the NAS story relatable in a fun, provocative, and memorable way. 

The perks of New Academic Street
By LJ Donnelly

Let’s be real: While The New Academic Street Project (NAS) may seem like an exercise in the overuse of acronyms, it is also about to make life on campus something to snap about. So, down with the white-clad hoarding – let’s take a look at what is actually going on here, and the top three reasons why it’s time we got behind it.

1. All of the space

Just when we thought group assignments couldn’t get any better, NAS has gone and made 2000 ways for us to do more of them. These portals/study rooms/study zones/halls/gardens/modular multi-functional spaces are essentially a bunch of new areas to “hang” and “collaborate”. This is a luxury which we have been hard-pressed to find unless, of course, we’ve been insensibly lost in the upper levels of Building 80. NAS’ newfound oases are already popping up, with the oversized, scando-style rocking chairs of Building 10 Level 5 an instant highlight. 

The good news: These spaces will be both indoors and outdoors. We’re talking a four-level Garden Building, rooftop terraces and balconies (weather protected, thankfully).

The bad news: It is still unclear as to exactly how many additional power-points the project will incorporate. We can only dream. 

2. All of the eating and drinking

If there was ever a time for turmeric lattes and zucchini noodles, that time is near. The great food hall of NAS promises a number of onsite outlets with real food at less than six-figure salary prices. Also promised is an abundance of comfortable leverages to sit and bask in the warmth of one’s own instant mi goreng. We welcome back old caffiene favourites, STREAT and Little Bang Espresso, and say some new hello’s to our very own Boost Juice, and St Gerry’s, whose greek desserts are the best doughnuts outside of TopShop.  

The good news: A BAR. Yep, licensed and ready to service a range of responsible study essentials on campus. Very nice.

The bad news: With over 19 good and fair food options on offer, we can’t guarantee that your packed lunch will make it out of the glad wrap.
3. All of the facilities

Oh studious one, your place of solace will soon be overthrown by students also wanting a piece of the newly transformed Swanston Library. Over 40% bigger, hanging chairs and standing desks will replace physical books with all the space one needs to spread out a laptop and trawl the online archives. The glass-filled RMIT Hall will invite Melbourne’s ever-glowing light to shine on RMIT Connect, the place where you can join a shortening text-message queue and share your university woes with an actual human. And, the four buildings that line Swanston St are being turned around to face the city, with loads of new entrance points and alleyways connecting campus and the surrounding streets because, let’s be honest, Bowen St was never an actual street. 

The good news: By design, the project aims for a 5-star sustainability rating. Rest assured your old-mate environment is well catered for.

The bad news: With a state-of-the-art Media Precinct also in the works, could there be more public/industry presentations on the assessment agenda…?

Just as we may miss the endless drawl of crying drills and saws, the new dawn on RMIT city campus will bear some quality benefits, making the absence of serenity more than worth it. Be down for what’s up with the New Academic Street development, if only to know where is best to grab yourself that simmering turmeric latte…


*GIFs courtesy of GIPHY / PDF stills also via GIPHY*

LJ Donnelly