Lyons is a creative practice that works design into the heart of everything we do – from designing better ways to collaborate with you as a client, to exploring functional solutions or your ‘big picture’ aspirations. Our creativity is not just of the proverbial ‘light bulb’ kind (although we do have those moments) but a deep professional commitment to expertise and ideas. We make architecture from ideas – big ideas of course – but also subtle and small ones, visual ideas or technological ones, complex ideas or just practical ones. Our ideas span across industries and we’re as happy designing a public space as we are refining an operating theatre in a hospital.

Our design process is an open conversation, not a secret. We’ll bring you into our creative discussion to share ideas and design strategies and we’ll keep talking about design from our first meeting to our last one in your finished project. We have a great process for this engagement and collaboration, one founded on empathetic listening and creatively challenging you towards a shared purpose. We genuinely want to know what is important for you and your project and how we can respond to this creatively.

We are also one of this country’s largest design practices working all around Australia from our Melbourne home. We have the talented people, the deep specialisation, the technical nous, the strategic management and the business skills, to work with you at any scale or complexity. Our senior team not only own and run our practice but also lead our design and delivery processes. You can be assured that you’re always dealing with someone from our team that is empowered to get things done, to unravel the knottiest problems and to roll up their sleeves and get the project done, on time and on budget. Your project is always held in a safe pair of hands.

Underpinning all of our design work is what it contributes to community – the community within your organization, the community you serve, or a campus, or workplace, a health setting or a public space. Our designs shape and reshape our cities to make extraordinary places for people.

So, that’s Lyons – creative, empathic, specialist, scaled up and ambitious architects – for you and the community.

Working with you

We take a project-specific approach to your project. We are interested in your culture, practical needs and aspirations and we use these to make each project unique to your place and people. We use specialist collaboration and co-design methodologies to understand the underlying vision that you have for your project and community.

We don’t just arrive at one final design for you, we explore many design possibilities in an open, exciting and engaging way – building real ownership and pride in your stakeholders and organisation.

“From the early workshops they ran on our vision and needs for the building to the almost weekly discussions about every aspect of the evolving design, it has been clear that their first priority has been building a space that works for us…We, as users, have also wanted to be very closely involved…..Lyons have been terrific in meeting these demands”

Prof Chris Reus-Smit, Head of Department of International Relations Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, The Australian National University (2007)

Connecting with cultures

We work with large organisations and small communities. We seek to make identities visible and meaningful – whether this be an institution seeking to build a new collaborative culture, an indigenous group shaping a project on Country, or a diverse local community making a new place in the city.

Through our commitment and curiosity, we create buildings and public spaces with social value and sustainability that are valued assets to the community they serve. We’ll collaborate with other experts, designers, artists and thinkers to extend the cultural dimensions of your project.

What Country are you on?

While the Lyons studio is located on the traditional lands of the
Wurundjeri and Boon Wurrung people we are fortunate to connect with  Elders and traditional lands across the country through our projects.

To discover which traditional land you are located on, view the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies’ map of Indigenous Australia.

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Creative challenges

We approach every new project as an opportunity to engage with your team in a creative, lateral, and thoughtful design process. We’ll approach your project with our ability to research, ask questions, speculate and propose new solutions.

We seek out the ‘hard questions’ in each project brief and transform them into creative opportunities, realised by the imagination and expertise of our team. We challenge you with our insights, test your assumptions and boundaries so that together we can find a clearer vision and optimal project.

For over two decades we’ve designed and delivered over 100 public buildings in healthcare, courts and justice, education, research, culture, workplaces and urban design.

We invite you to view our projects and see our creativity in action.

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“Lyons successfully navigated a complex site [in Yagan Square] with numerous competing stakeholder interests and delivered an all-inclusive, welcoming civic space. The creative approach to problem solving was greatly valued and it was a great experience working with Lyons.”

Ren Lee, MRA Yagan Square Project Manager

Expertise and empathy

Every member of our team brings deep knowledge and experience to your project. We’re always open to new understandings and actively share our expertise with clients and peers through a design process founded on reciprocal knowledge sharing.

At the centre of this design process is you—what makes you tick, your values and goals, your place and people as well as your detailed functional requirements. Together with our clients and collaborators we’ve helped transform organisations, create major projects, and reshape cities.

“Lyons’ design methodology is robust and engaging. From the beginning both DHHS and client stakeholders were engaged in the design process in a collaborative and transparent way…As the client we felt that Lyons was as committed to our model of care as we were throughout the design process.”

Andrew Crettenden, Executive Director, Strategy & Planning, St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne

Collaboration and co-design

Our approach invites you and your stakeholders to participate in our open design process, based on mutual respect and a ‘no idea is a bad idea’ approach. Our workshops are inclusive, packed with ideas and keep the project moving.

Collaboration and co-design are about sharing the design journey with you, openly and generously. We will work with a wide cross section of your organisation to build deep ownership while also focussing on your most strategic thinking from your executive decision makers.

A key philosophy that guides our approach is ‘more ideas, better outcomes’. We believe collaboration and co-design are imperative to award-winning outcomes, and are honoured to be recognised by our clients, peers and the design community year after year.

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Technology and visualisation

We use technology to better communicate the challenges, options and concepts. Our industry leading ability in visualisation and presenting design ideas serves to enhance every stakeholder’s understanding of the complex process of design and building – and build ownership in the decision-making process.

Our practice has developed powerful tools to provide integrated 3d visualisation and parametric BIM modelling for design and delivery. With these platforms we work to simplify the risks in complex documentation and procurement.

Hands-on leadership

From day one until you move in our senior and expert team will lead your project, as a collective of designers, strategic thinkers, communicators, administrators and project advocates. Our Directors and senior staff will be there at every step and are deeply committed to the design of each project.

Led by our directors we’ve built a practice model based on our whole studio of talented architects, interior designers, and technicians to design, document and deliver your project with expertise and passion.

A taste of Lyons' culture

“Outstanding project outcomes at Lyons come from the collective attitude we have towards positive design critique, along with the investment in the professional growth of our people to contribute to this discourse across the many facets of architecture. What really stands out to me across our studio is the multiplicity of voices and depth of input we draw upon to shape our projects and the fabric and direction of our practice.

As Directors we aren’t the sole decision makers; we come together with the Senior Executive and members of the studio to arrive at solutions together. I believe our hands-on leadership permeates through the practice, fostering a culture of open expression and a willingness from our diverse staff to engage with ideas and contribute to our culture across many levels. Great ideas can truly come from anywhere, and we recognise that open dialogue with our people – and our clients – is where we produce our formative and most inspired results.” – James Wilson, Director of Lyons

Working across Australia

While we are based in Melbourne, you’ll find our project teams delivering work in almost every state, city and regional area around Australia. We’ll become locals wherever your project may be and we’ll partner with local professional colleagues to get the best outcome for your project.

Just like you, we remain highly connected to every project. We’re committed to regular visits whenever you need us, with state-of-the-art VC technology to bring our strategic design and project leadership skills to you. We’ll do this from the first creative design phase to being there when the last work is complete.

Delivering quality

Throughout the design and documentation we utilise our third-party certified ISO 9001:2015 process to make sure that cost, time, safety of design and design quality parameters are met to your satisfaction.

We also use third party certified ISO 14001:2015 Environmental management and ISO 45001:2015 OHS management processes in our work to provide a sustainable and safe platform for your project.

Lyons is led by a talented team of Directors, Principals and Associates.


Neil Appleton, Corbett Lyon, Carey Lyon, Hari Pliambas, Adrian Stanic and James Wilson

Meet the teamMeet the team

Senior Principals

Jenine Birney, Paul Dash, Ross Heywood, Diana Jones, Adam Pustola and Rob Tursi.


Joanne Hutchinson, Alex McCabe, Lisa O’Kane, Tess O’Meara, Elliot Wong and Kate Woodman.


Kylie Brown, Lee Deveridge, Alexander Gibson, David Issacs, Nathan James, Fiona Lew, Stephanie Lancuba, Vicky Li, Anderson Matthews, Alan McLean, Lily Pan, Andim Taip, Grant Trewella, Nina Wyatt and Joanne Yong.