Human Centred Design begins with a deep and comprehensive understanding of the people being designed for, including behaviours and experiences to harnesses knowledge of the environment they inhabit.

For us Architecture and buildings are a platform for human life, we see a design as the design of a set of human experiences that will unfold over time. By focusing on designing human experience we soon discovered traditional architectural methods of obtaining a brief from our clients were too limiting, usually they would produce and list of rooms, a budget and a timeframe. Surroundings was a boutique architecture practice specialising in Human Centred Architecture, now we specialise in community consultation and work with architects and their clients. 

Architects need to gain a deep understanding of their clients to design and create meaningful experiences for them, after all, meaningful experiences are different for different people.  It is difficult to meet people for the first time and ask really personal direct questions, so we set about design a new way for architects to interact with their clients. Our research has been an evolutionary process, during our time as architects we would design a workshop and test new ideas and refine our successful methods with each client.

Now we have refined our work into a collection of tools, workshops and processes that we adapt to each project we come to. 

Our People

Surroundings is the sum of our individual passions and perspectives. We love to explore, create and connect.

 Suzie Wiley

Suzie Wiley

Laura Pascoe

I am and architect interested in injecting meaningful spaces for individuals and collectives into existing frameworks – homes, workplaces, suburbs, cities, nature.  I enjoy creating heightened human habitats that embrace and magnify our human experiences. I like to start by deeply understanding people – to do this we practice Human Centred Design. To help us do this I use my love of systems, frameworks and methodogies to create new applications for design thinking in architecture. I’m interested in education and exploring new ways for users to co-design with us and learn during our design process. 

I am an architect, artist, maker and clarifier. I’m fascinated by people and love understanding their unique preferences and am passionate about enabling them to enhance their surroundings. I make objects, design spaces, facilitate workshops and consult on projects. By listening to people’s stories I can help to identify their ideal experiences, design a unique solution and clarify a bespoke direction.

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Australian Interior Design Awards 2015

Winner Best State Residential Design 2015

Surroundings was awarded the Best State Residential Award for our Dock St Warehouse Project.

Australian Interior Design Awards 2014

Shortlist Workplace Category

Surroundings was Shortlisted for our Endodontic Group Project


2015 Eat Drink Design Awards

Shortlist Best Bar

Surroundings was Shortlisted for our project Heya Bar


Energex Sustainable Building Award

The 100 Ipswich Road Project was a winner for Wiley & Co when they were awarded the Major Winner for Building Owners in Energex Sustainable Building Awards.

Design Institute of Australia Award

Suzie Wiley was awarded a commendation for Environmentally Sustainable Design in the Interior Design Awards held in Melbourne for the 100 Ipswich Road Project .


Master Builders Association State Award

Wiley & Co Pty Ltd, for Excellence in Building for Queenslands Climate

($2 - 10million)