Philip Cox

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Philip Cox

Philip Sutton Cox

(1939-10-01) 1 October 1939 (age 83)
Alma mater
SpouseLouise Cox (sep. 1988)[1]
PartnerJanet Hawley[1]
Children2 daughters (with Louise)[1]
PracticeCox Architecture (1963–present)[1]
ProjectsSydney Olympic Park
Energex headquarters located in Newstead, Brisbane
The Helix bridge at night, located in Marina Bay, Singapore

Philip Sutton Cox AO (born 1 October 1939) is an Australian architect. Cox is the founding partner of Cox Architecture, one of the largest architectural practices in Australia.

He commenced his first practice with Ian McKay in 1962, and in 1967 he founded his own practice, Philip Cox and Associates.[1][2] The firm has grown to become Cox Architecture, with offices across Australia as well as in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.[3][4] Involved in much of concept design for each project over fifty years, Cox stepped back from the business in 2015 that is now responsible for projects throughout Australia and also in South-East Asia, China, the Middle East, South Africa and Europe. He has been described as "epitomising the Sydney School of Architecture" in earlier projects.[5][6] His work has won him multiple awards, the first being in 1963, one year after graduating from the University of Sydney. His most recent award was in 1989.[1]

Early years and education[edit]

Philip Sutton Cox was born on 1 October 1939 to Ron and May Cox. He was their second child. He has one older sister, Judith. His childhood was comfortable, growing up in Killara on the North Shore in Sydney but he was born just one month after the start of World War II, which ended when he was six.

Cox attended Gordon Public School and then the Sydney Church of England Grammar School (Shore) in North Sydney. In his first years at Shore, art was taught by John Lipscombe, who had helped plan the new art block which had been praised by the architect Harry Seidler, who had lectured in the building in July 1952. Cox decided at quite an early age that he wanted to be an architect, though this was not clear until it was nearly time to leave school. He won a Commonwealth scholarship which was to pay his fees.[7]

Cox studied at the University of Sydney between 1957 and 1962, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture, then at the University of New South Wales between 1970 and 1975, where he was awarded a Doctorate of Science.[7]

Major architectural works[edit]

Cox was the architect responsible for initially implementing the American Radburn design for public housing in New South Wales.

Cox and his firm have designed many iconic public buildings in Australia and throughout South East Asia including a number of the buildings used for the Sydney Olympics. The following list provides a summary of some of the major architectural design works of Cox and his firm, ordered from earliest to most recent, where Cox has either worked individually or as part of consortia:

Completed Project name Location Award Notes
1963 St Andrews Presbyterian Church Leppington, South-western Sydney, New South Wales John Sulman Medal (1965) (demolished)[2][8]
1965 C B Alexander Agricultural College Tocal, New South Wales
  • John Sulman Medal (1965);
  • Blacket Award (1965)
1969 Hawkins Residence 19 Norma Crescent, Cheltenham Wilkinson Award (1969) [5]
1977 Bruce Stadium Bruce, Australian Capital Territory [1][9]
1985 Ayers Rock Resort Yulara, Northern Territory Sir Zelman Cowen Award (1985) [1]
1987 Haileybury Chapel Springvale Road, Melbourne, Victoria
1988 Sydney Convention & Exhibition Centre Darling Harbour, Sydney, New South Wales John Sulman Medal (1989) (demolished 2013)[10]
1988 Rod Laver Arena Flinders Park, Melbourne, Victoria (refurbished 1995)[9]
1991 Australian National Maritime Museum Darling Harbour, Sydney, New South Wales [11]
1988 Sydney Football Stadium Moore Park, Sydney, New South Wales (demolished 2019) [9]
1995 Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre South Bank, Brisbane, Queensland
1994 Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Sydney, New South Wales
1997 Sydney Harbour Casino Darling Harbour, Sydney, New South Wales [9]
1999 Sydney Super Dome Sydney Olympic Park, Sydney, New South Wales
1999 Singapore Expo Changi, Singapore
2001 National Wine Centre of Australia North Terrace, Adelaide, South Australia [12]
1996 Cairns Convention Centre Cairns, Queensland
2000 Princess Alexandra Hospital Redevelopment Woolloongabba, Brisbane, Queensland
2001 Goodwill Bridge South Bank, Brisbane, Queensland [13]
2002 Western Australian Maritime Museum Victoria Quay, Fremantle, Western Australia
2004 Brisbane Magistrates Court George Street, Brisbane, Queensland
2005 Challenger Institute of Technology, Marine Campus Fremantle, Western Australia
2006 Northern Stand, Melbourne Cricket Ground
2007 National Institute of Circus Arts Prahran, Melbourne, Victoria Award for Architectural Steel Design – Large Project, Australian Steel Institute VIC (2008)
District Court of Western Australia Perth, Western Australia
2008 Australian Film, Television and Radio School Moore Park, Sydney, New South Wales State Commendation for Commercial Architecture, AIA NSW (2010)
2010 Energex Headquarters Newstead, Brisbane, Queensland
2010 The Helix Marina Bay, Singapore [14]
2010 AAMI Park Sports & Entertainment Precinct, Melbourne, Victoria World's Most Iconic and Culturally Significant Stadium, World Stadium Congress (2012)
National Award for Public Architecture, AIA (2011)
State Architecture Medal, AIA VIC, (2011)
William Wardell Award for Public Architecture, AIA VIC (2011)
2012 One One One Eagle Street Brisbane, Queensland John Dalton Award for Building of the Year, AIA QLD (2013)
Corian Design Awards Winner (Project) (2015)
2012 Queensland Performing Arts Centre Refurbishment South Bank, Brisbane, Queensland Interior Design Impact Award, AIDA (2016)
2013 Neuroscience Research Australia Randwick, Sydney, New South Wales The People's Choice Award, Randwick City Council (2013)
2014 Kaohsiung Exhibition Center Kaohsiung, Taiwan Excellence Award, Chinese Institute of Engineers (2014) [16]
2015 Carnarvon Police and Justice Complex Carnarvon, Western Australia
2016 Anna Meares Velodrome Chandler, Brisbane, Queensland Venue for 2018 Commonwealth Games [17]
2018 Sir John Monash Centre Villers-Bretonneux, France [18]
2018 Jakarta International Velodrome Jakarta, Indonesia
2015 Newcastle Courthouse Newcastle, New South Wales
2021 Oman Across Ages Museum Muscat, Oman
2020 National Maritime Museum of China Tianjin, China
2020 Christchurch Justice and Emergency Services Precinct Christchurch, New Zealand


Cox has received the Sir Zelman Cowen Award, the RAIA Gold Medal in 1984, Life Fellowship to the RAIA in 1987 and Honorary Fellowship of the American Institute of Architects in the same year. In 1988 he was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in recognition of service to architecture.[19] In 1993 he received the inaugural award for Sport and Architecture from the International Olympic Committee, and is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities.

Cox has held a range of voluntary positions during his professional career including Vice President, Environment Board, RAIA, NSW Chapter; a Member, Historic Buildings Committee, Cancer Patients Assistance Society of NSW; Vice President, Cancer Patients Assistance Society of NSW; Vice Chairman, Architecture and Design Panel, Visual Arts Board, Australia Council; and Chairman of Education Board of the RAIA, Federal Chapter.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Cox is separated from wife Louise Cox AO, a fellow architect. They married in Sydney in April 1972 and have two daughters, Charlotte and Sophie. His partner of over two decades is the journalist Janet Hawley.[7]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Bleby, Michael (20 August 2016). "Architect Philip Cox delivers upfront on architecture's deficiencies". Australian Financial Review. Australia. Archived from the original on 20 August 2016. Retrieved 20 August 2016.
  2. ^ a b c Cox, Philip (7 September 2015). "Vale Ian McKay". Architecture AU. Archived from the original on 28 August 2016. Retrieved 20 August 2016.
  3. ^ "Cox Architecture Sydney". ArchitectureAU. 16 August 2017. Archived from the original on 31 March 2015. Retrieved 2 October 2020.
  4. ^ "Cox Architecture official website". Archived from the original on 30 October 2011. Retrieved 15 April 2011.
  5. ^ a b Lynch, Owen (10 September 2013). "Philip Cox: A half century". In design live. Archived from the original on 21 May 2016. Retrieved 20 August 2016.
  6. ^ "ULTIMATEHIDES website". Archived from the original on 19 February 2011. Retrieved 15 April 2011.
  7. ^ a b c Towndrow, Jennifer (1991). Philip Cox. Portrait of an Australian Architect. Penguin Books.
  8. ^ Rushton, Gina (17 April 2014). "Philip Cox bristling at garden plan critics". The Australian. Archived from the original on 19 April 2014. Retrieved 20 August 2016.
  9. ^ a b c d e Pickett, Charles (4 November 2013). "Casinos and stadiums: Philip Cox". Inside the collection. Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences. Archived from the original on 15 August 2020. Retrieved 21 August 2016.
  10. ^ Hasham, Nicole (16 January 2013). "Architect lashes out at 'stupid' demolition". The Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 7 February 2017. Retrieved 18 August 2016.
  11. ^ Meacham, Steve (3 December 2001). "How the museum boss got engaged". Sydney Morning Herald. p. 14.
  12. ^ Australian Institute of Architects: "National Wine Centre" Archived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine, retrieved 15 November 2013
  13. ^ Musgrave, Elizabeth (September 2002). "Goodwill overture". Architecture Australia. 91 (5): 66. ISSN 0003-8725. Archived from the original on 28 September 2012. Retrieved 20 July 2011.
  14. ^ "Helix Bridge / Cox Architecture with Architects 61". ArchDaily. 10 January 2012. Archived from the original on 11 November 2020. Retrieved 19 August 2016.
  15. ^ "One One Eagle Street / Cox Rayner Architects". ArchDaily. 15 May 2013. Archived from the original on 1 September 2016. Retrieved 20 August 2016.
  16. ^ "Cox wins Taiwanese project". Architecture & Design. 27 August 2010. Archived from the original on 21 August 2016. Retrieved 20 August 2016.
  17. ^ "Sleeman Sports Complex Anna Meares Velodrome". Stadiums Queensland. Archived from the original on 15 January 2019. Retrieved 7 January 2018.
  18. ^ Crowe, David (24 April 2018). "'We must remember': PM opens $100m Monash centre in France". The Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 24 April 2018. Retrieved 25 April 2018.
  19. ^ "Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) entry for COX, Philip Sutton". It's an Honour, Australian Honours Database. Canberra, Australia: Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. 26 January 1988. Retrieved 21 August 2016.

Further reading[edit]

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