The vibrant and eclectic Brisbane suburb of Fortitude Valley provided inspiration for the new offices of an international planning, design and environmental consultancy. By Stephanie Madison.
March 6th, 2014
Base Architecture director Shawn Godwin, whose firm was behind the project’s design, says the space needed to reflect the “dynamic culture of urban renewal and reuse that characterises the…precinct”.
“The combination of elements: timber, concrete, steel and glass provide an eclectic yet cohesive interior that mirrors the combination of older structures and newer designs in Fortitude Valley,” Godwin says.
Originally a neglected storage warehouse that had “disengaged from the street”, the Robertson Street property underwent an extensive six month renovation and rebuild that saw Base Architecture utilising much of the existing structure by accentuating exposed beams, brickwork, concrete and timber floors.
“The design added a multifaceted suspended plywood ceiling and detailing highlighted with a number of coloured panels dispersed throughout, tying in with the corporate colours of the tenants,” Godwin says.
Being an environmental consultancy with a focus on sustainable planning and design, the clients required an environmentally sensitive design approach.
“The adoption of passive design principles throughout and the use of more efficient technologies meant sustainability was at the forefront of the client’s and architects’ minds,” Godwin says.
“Retaining a lot of the existing fabric of the building resulted in a reduction in construction costs and the need for new materials.
“The central skylight and void saw the dependency of artificial lighting drop throughout the tenancy and the operability of the new windows allowed for a reduction in the use of air conditioning on days that allowed it.”
The building’s front facade was also a primary focus with external materials required to echo the energy and aesthetics of internal elements to create cohesion.
“The palette of materials used externally matches what was proposed internally and the form meets the functional brief of protecting the façade and entrance from the elements while creating an edgy and energetic statement,” Godwin says.
The Robertson street project was completed in June 2013.
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