About

Kaunitz Yeung Architecture is a multi-award winning internationally recognised practice founded by the husband and wife team of David Kaunitz and Ka Wai Yeung. It combines their extensive commercial experience with David’s knowledge of living in and working with communities. The result is architecture that places people at its centre and where good architecture does not need to necessarily be a luxury item. Their projects are bespoke solutions that sensitively respond to clients, stakeholders, end user requirements, site context and the budget.

TESTIMONIALS

The Australian Institute of Architects has been delighted to have David address our professional community as part of the Institute’s program of events. The authenticity, passion and commitment with which David speaks of Kaunitz Yeung’s work is inspiring, and precisely echoes that which the practice brings to its projects. Kate Concannon, Advocacy & Communications, Australian Institute of Architects

Kaunitz Yeung Architecture’s innovative and inclusive approach to architecture is evident from the multiple European Health Care Design Congress awards they have received. These prestigious international awards, which are evaluated by an interdisciplinary team of world leading clinicians, health administrators and designers, demonstrates how their work is at the forefront of innovation in healthcare design around the world. This was reinforced by David’s inspiring and passionate talk at the 2018 Congress. Marc Sansom, Managing Director, Salus Global

David’s respectful and collaborative approach with the Martu Elders and communities has created a deep sense of ownership and pride in our new remote clinics. Kaunitz Yeung Architecture designed and project managed the clinics in two of the remotest communities in Australia with professionalism and care, and within a tight budget. These were delivered to a high quality with the clinical spaces and health provision equal to that of a major city. Robby Chibawe, CEO, Punturkunu Aboriginal Medical Service

The design sets a new standard in childcare. Indoor / outdoor spaces that are protected and filled with natural light provide the perfect environment for children to thrive. This high-quality learning environment combined with our resources and curriculum are industry leading and support the children’s learning while helping fuel their imagination. Kat Wieczorek-Ghisso, Co-founder Paisley Park

As a repeat client for over a decade it has been a privilege to see Kaunitz Yeung Architecture grow into an industry leader in health, education and cultural projects. At the heart of this is their uncompromising and unwavering focus on designing for the people that we serve. In doing so they have fused innovative, best practice architecture with respect of people, place and culture. This results in buildings which people feel integrally connected to and love to use. Given the opportunity, I would choose to work in partnership with community and Kaunitz Yeung Architecture again.

Kaunitz Yeung Architecture’s innovative and inclusive approach to architecture is evident from the multiple European Health Care Design Congress awards they have received. These prestigious international awards, which are evaluated by an interdisciplinary team of world leading clinicians, health administrators and designers, demonstrates how their work is at the forefront of innovation in healthcare design around the world. This was reinforced by David’s inspiring and passionate talk at the 2018 Congress. Brett Cowling Former CEO Ngaanyatjarra Health & Biripi AMS

The Kaunitz Yeung team is our trusted partner in achieving desired architectural outcomes. David Kaunitz worked seamlessly to effectively deliver a challenging project. David possesses great architectural capability blended with commercial acumen. I highly recommend Kaunitz Yeung as a long-term project partner.” George Pajmakoski, Owner Little Kingdom Childcare

“We have used Kaunitz Yeung Architecture for 2 of our childcare projects to date, and  have consistently received a high level of design expertise within the childcare proportion of our projects. On a recent project Kaunitz Yeung were able to redesign a previously designed childcare building with efficiencies that increased the child numbers from 79 to 113 children, whilst decreasing the gross floor area by 30%. This has provided significant additional revenue as well as decreased construction costs.We would recommend any developer looking to create a high quality purpose build childcare centre, whilst ensuring practical and economical design expertise is utilised – speak with Kaunitz Yeung before committing elsewhere.” Jono Isaac, Director Isaac Property

Kaunitz Yeung Architecture through listening and understanding designed a building that perfectly captures the mantra and intent, enabling our wines to be portrayed and experienced perfectly. The original discussions were to maximise the views of the iconic Lizzard/Yellow rock to the south east. Get elevation to showcase the views overlooking the vineyard and mountain ranges  to the west. Have the opportunity to subtly extend the overall space downstairs. A location on the property for safe public access and  to not encroach into the work and residence areas.

After building the vineyard from scratch I required an intimate, uplifting space to provide a comfortable informal experience. As the vigneron, winemaker and cellar door manager, the building needed to reflect my industrial values and unvarnished approach to wine making. This recycled weathered building which morphs seamlessly into the hilly landscape, does resoundingly achieve this.  An added surprise is the cellar door also transcends every demographic.  My visitors are extremely enthusiastic, happy to spend extended time tasting wines, enjoying the panoramas and intimately engaging with friends, perfect strangers and myself.   The large number of recommendations and  return customers is testament to the building and Kaunitz Yeung. David Fromberg, Winemaker and Owner.

 

Team

David Kaunitz

Director and co-founder, Kaunitz Yeung Architecture | Speaker | Lecturer

Consultation, collaboration and time are the three ingredients David Kaunitz adds to his architectural practice that transforms a design from a building into a place.

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The architecture must be allowed to become a reflection of the community, guided but not determined by us. Listening is central to our practice. This results in projects that reflect our clients, stakeholders, users and environments, whose requirements, aspirations, history and culture are embedded within them.

David founded Kaunitz Yeung with his wife Ka Wai Yeung following his return to Sydney after living in the UK and the Solomon Islands.

His seven years in the UK included five as a director of a large practice running its London studio where he worked on some of the largest projects in Europe, including the Barnsley Interchange and The London Olympic Village for clients such as HSBC, Marks & Spencer and Lend Lease. It was here he developed a passion for health, education and public buildings with a community focus and honed the skills to manage complex networks of stakeholders.

A fascination with vernacular architecture and sustainable communities subsequently led to David’s long association with the Pacific Islands, and the Solomon Islands in particular.

David has more than a decade of community development and post disaster experience in South East Asia and the Pacific working for clients such as UNICEF, UNHCR, World Vision and the Governments of Australia, New Zealand, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Cook Islands, Fiji and the Philippines. As part of this time he spent four years living in the Solomon Islands, a period he says played an integral role in developing his approach to working with First Nations People and culturally diverse groups. David is also a fluent Pidgin speaker.

David’s European experience as senior architect and his unique relationship with remote communities underpins both the capability and direction of Kaunitz Yeung Architecture and its broad range of successful health, education, tourism and cultural projects for governments, organisations and commercial clients.

With projects in more than 30 Aboriginal communities, David has developed unique expertise working with Aboriginal stakeholders. He authored the 2017 update to the ‘Australian Government, Department of Health, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Funded Capital Works Projects – Facility Design Guidelines’.

Kaunitz Yeung Architecture’s projects have received numerous awards in Australia and abroad, among them several European Healthcare Design Awards and Leading European Architects Forum Sustainability Awards and a World Community Architecture Award.

Most recently the firm received three NSW Architecture Awards: the Premier’s Prize for distinguished social merit, the Best Commercial Building Award and the Colorbond Award for Steel Architecture for the Biripi Aboriginal Health Clinic, edging out high profile projects at Barangaroo and the International Convention Centre (ICC) Sydney. According to the jury, Biripi is “a testament to the journey of place, health, nature and people”.

David is a registered architect in NSW, WA and the UK.

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Ka Wai Yeung

Director and co-founder, Kaunitz Yeung Architecture | Lecturer | Author

Exceptional client engagement, resourcefulness and close attention to detail are the specialties Ka Wai Yeung combines in her architectural practice, elevating a design from aesthetic functionality to innovative placemaking.

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I love visiting sites and spending time with the people who we are designing and building for – going to the community nourishes the design and gives me the inspiration to improve the project. It is essential to have a deep connection with people and place, that is important.

Ka Wai co-founded Kaunitz Yeung Architecture with her husband David Kaunitz after stints at two award-winning Australian practices. She began her career at HASSELL Studio before spending five years as a senior architect under Diane Jones at PTW Architects, specialising in health and aged care.

Born in Hong Kong, educated in Auckland, New Zealand, and with degrees from the University of Sydney (Bachelor of Architecture) and the University of New South Wales (Master of Architecture), Ka Wai has fostered a global outlook in her architectural practice with her commerce and finance knowledge adding entrepreneurial channels, from identifying innovative income streams, to staging and branding.

After graduation she started at HASSELL Studio, one of Australia’s largest architecture practices, before being hired by Diane Jones of PTW Architects to work on a competition for the space now known as Sydney’s Barangaroo. She has Australian and international experience on projects ranging from residential to airports, environment to justice and heritage, and particular expertise in public buildings, education and childcare, in addition to health and aged care.

It was on a trip to India for Habitat For Humanity where Ka Wai affirmed how architecture could have a longstanding positive impact beyond aesthetics. She has since brought that into both her practice, developing socially responsible and culturally sensitive design, and the drivers behind it, including publishing on parametric modelling and advanced computing techniques for post-disaster reconstruction in developing countries.

She has been an active member of Emergency Architects Australia, a non-government organisation with post-disaster rebuild projects around the world, for more than three years, and was Company Secretary.

Ka Wai met David Kaunitz at a presentation of his Solomon Islands work at the NSW Institute of Architects. Their aligned values and complementary skills led to significant time in the field working on community development projects and projects in the Pacific before they co-founded Kaunitz Yeung Architecture.

Kaunitz Yeung Architecture’s projects have received numerous awards in Australia and abroad, among them 3 European Healthcare Design Awards, 2Leading European Architects Forum Sustainability Awards, a World Community Architecture Award, an Architecture Masterprize and a Western Australian Architects Award Commendation.

Most recently the firm received three NSW Architecture Awards: the Premier’s Prize for distinguished social merit, the Best Commercial Building Award and the Colorbond Award for Steel Architecture for the Biripi Aboriginal Health Clinic, edging out high profile projects at Barangaroo and the International Convention Centre (ICC) Sydney. According to the jury, Biripi is “a testament to the journey of place, health, nature and people”.

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