Located at 447 Collins Street in Melbourne, Australia, this iconic shaping project has transformed the city block bounded by Collins, William, Market Streets and Flinders Lane, with the towers connecting the city’s main business boulevard to the Yarra River.
Designed by Woods Bagot (Australia) and SHoP Architects (USA), the two towers are elegantly connected via a bridge at their highest point.
The mixed-use development brings together luxury accommodation and premium office space, comprising of 44 levels with a five-level basement for car parking. A significant public open space at the Market Street end will be owned and maintained by the City of Melbourne and will include a tree grove leading to a promenade and amphitheatre space.
Recognition is WELL deserved
The commercial component of this iconic development has become Australia’s third project to achieve WELL Precertification at the Platinum level – a building standard that demonstrates leadership in health and wellness.
It has met all the preconditions for certification set by the International WELL Building Institute along with 80 per cent of the optimisation features. The criteria which focuses on nutrition, fitness, mood, sleep patterns and the cognitive performance of a building’s inhabitants includes indoor air quality monitoring, interior fitness circulation, superior natural lighting and ventilation, end of trip amenities and bicycle access that is separate of cars.
Our sustainability consultants guided the design team on initiatives to improve the health and wellbeing for staff, which included: indoor air quality monitoring, interior fitness circulation, superior natural lighting and ventilation, end of trip amenities and bicycle access separate of cars.
Brenda Kingston, Director of Sustainability at WSP, believes that this accreditation will enable the developers – Cbus Property and ISPT – to attract strong interest from potential tenants across their hotel, commercial and residential offerings.
She says, “In Australia, the WELL rating is still relatively new to the market, and this move towards targeting Precertification at the Platinum level is reflective of an increased focus on wellness within our society, and in the workforce. As such, we are likely to see new developments following in the footsteps of Collins Arch that strive for the platinum level accreditation.”
The project has achieved a 6-star Green Star – Design & As Built, WELL Health & Safety, 5-star NABERS Indoor Environment and a 5.5-star NABERS energy rating. The project is currently certified carbon neutral.
Making an iconic building future ready
WSP provided Electrical, Fire Protection, Communications, Security, Specialist Lighting, Civil, Waste Management and Sustainability services.
Taking up a complete city block comprising 6,000m2, Collins Arch is one of the largest single development projects in Melbourne. Planning for such an undertaking required the WSP Building Services team to undertake significant engagement and liaison with network and infrastructure authorities with respect to the upgrade and coordination of incoming power, communications and water infrastructure.
Once inside the building, key services spaces and pathways were meticulously planned with the architect and building owners to ensure that infrastructure and building services systems were arranged in a way that would clearly align with title boundaries and agreed areas of responsibility for each of the owners’ corporations (commercial, retail, hotel, residential and common areas).
Due to the number of street frontages and property addresses, the fire protection infrastructure has been designed as a series of separate ring mains per title emanating from common fire plant and infrastructure. To allow the fire brigade to adequately respond to emergency scenarios across such a large site, each property was designed to have their own fire control centre with all alarms and evacuation controls centrally monitored at a main Fire Control Room.
With such a large site, bounded by three major streets and a public park, security of the building asset, control of visitors to the development and staff and public safety were of critical importance, not only to the property owners and prospective tenants but also to the City of Melbourne.
Our team assessed the physical configuration of the facility and potential vulnerable areas, the various nature of activity in and around the site and the varying degrees of accessibility, to tailor the electronic surveillance and access control system design to the needs and requirements of the areas being protected. Of particular importance was the surveillance of the building perimeter, internal public lane ways and street level. Our team worked closely with the developers, hotel operator, tenants and architects so that the proposed electronic security measures were appropriate for users while being incorporated into the building form in a manner which was discrete but served as a visible deterrent to crime.
Due the mixed-use nature of the development, we proposed and designed an intuitive metering system, presented in a mobile phone application, which allowed all tenants to access and monitor real time energy usage and carbon footprint.
In addition to the intuitive metering, electric car charging capabilities were also designed and installed. Payment and car charging status were also integrated into the mobile phone application for the overall building.
Our waste design is in accordance with NABERS waste auditing and accreditation standards. The design provides an above requirement solution to waste management including the separation of over 10 waste streams and an above average waste diversion from landfill target.
Shine bright like a diamond
Our Specialist Lighting team was credited with a Commendation Award at the 20/21 IESANZ VIC Lighting Design Awards for the successful use of subtle lighting tools to highlight architectural elements. The judges commented, “Use of dappled lighting is a very fun and welcome way to activate the space. The coffered ceiling is beautifully lit and makes the space that much more interesting. Across the board, this is a bold design technique that is very well implemented.”
In collaboration with Cbus Property, Multiplex, SHoP Architects, Woods Bagot and OCULUS, WSP developed the exterior public realm lighting for this new precinct. From the striking honeycomb coffered ceiling to the towering water wall this new space is designed to create an impact.
“Anchoring the site is a pair of tapered 164m towers connected by an elevated sky bridge which is subtly illuminated at night,” concludes Kim Straatemeier, Senior Lighting Designer.
We also delivered specialist lighting services to the hotel, commercial and residential areas.
The hotel rooms and common areas required a great deal of future ready design thinking. With custom lighting fixtures in all hotel rooms, and integrated lighting elements to create spaces that feels vibrant but intimate.
The commercial and residential common areas of 447 Collins required many hours of collaboration with Woods Bagot and SHoP Architects to ensure a world class building.
Adrian Sterritt, Associate Director at WSP comments, “Balancing the design between daylight and artificial light to enhance visual acuity, we were able to add lighting to the commercial lobbies and exterior spaces which in turn has reduced the project cost, environmental impact and focused resources on the critical elements of the space.
“When applied to the commercial area, this technique adds drama and theatre to the space.”