7 London CircuitEdit profile
The distinctive architecture of 7 London Circuit reflects the innovative, high-tech business of its key tenant, National ICT Australia (NICTA). Designed to make a strong visual statement, the building reinforces the significance of the City West site and is in keeping with Griffin’s urban design principles. The building is organised around a visual axis and through-site-link to City Hill. This axis is augmented at ground level by a pedestrian street that connects the atrium of the building to the adjoining development of 18 Marcus Clarke. Effectively, together, these buildings create a campus Another significant influence on the design was the need to carefully consider the building’s silhouette. From the outset, the building was considered to have 5 facades – four sides plus a roof-scape, which is overlooked by the 18Marcus Clarke building. Public & Cultural Benefits The amenity and concepts contributing to the public domain An enhanced public domain by way of a specialised landscape treatment helps create a clear transition between the commercial and residential zones along London Circuit. An external colonnade frontage along London Circuit, Farrell Place and Gordon Street creates a dynamic and vibrant link between the landscape zone and the internal building spaces. The through site link that is on axis with City Hill provides a valuable urban connection and mid-block activation. This link, together with the retail activated ground plane, enhances the pedestrian experience and contributes to the repair of the urban-scape of this part of Canberra. Relationship of Built Form to Context Concepts engaged with new and pre-existing conditions The building forms a significant component of the planning hierarchy of the western sector of Civic. The built form responds to the massing principles defined for the site by NCA and are in accordance with the Griffin Legacy. The site is incredibly important given its position on the radial junction of the hexagon street grid. To acknowledge the importance of the figural void of London Circuit, the building holds the street alignment of London Circuit. The façade design has a strong horizontal proportion to emphasis the radial geometry of the site and street alignment. Each faced of the building is articulated to respond to its immediate urban context and solar orientation. Program Resolution Functional performance assessed against the brief The perimeter of the ground floor is activated by retail. Along this colonnade the commercial support zone is clearly distinguished by a full height shopfront with high transparency clear glazing. The large 2,000sqm floor plates offer a new workplace to what has previously been provided in Canberra. Our research into the workplace has been instrumental in creating a design that offers a highly effective and efficient work environment. Column locations are minimised and core to glass dimensions are optimised to compliment a variety of fit-outs. The atrium was designed as an internal street for site linkage and also integrate the winter gardens. Integration of Allied Disciplines Contribution of others, including engineers, landscape architects, artists and other specialists to the outcome Key stakeholders and consultants were involved very early on in process. A collaborative consultant team was engaged early on in the process to ensure a resolved outcome that completed the building. Cost/Value Outcome The effectiveness of decisions related to financial issues 7 London Circuit is an iconic development providing a standard of commercial office space currently unmatched in Canberra. As well as achieving standards of quality and corporate workplace unparalleled in the National Capital, the development has also made value for money a prime consideration. This building has been procured by a Design and Construct process. Consequently, the building is a reflection of a rigorous business case and has been designed and documented to meet stringent financial hurdles. The Developer, Leighton Properties, is delighted that this building has been built, tenanted and on-sold all within the parameters of their feasibility study. Sustainability The benefit to the environment through design Passive design measures were central to the design concept in a strategy to minimise energy consumption and create a healthy workplace. A veil folds from the roof to the west façade and increases the insulation to the western aspect of the building as well as reducing the extent of glazing to this façade. The roof was conceived to act as a fly roof does on a tent. It is open at its lower end and its form encourages the passage of air beneath it resulting in a further cooling of the shaded roof deck below. Other passive measures employed included sun shading to the north façade and high performance low-E glazing to all facades. Façade types were chosen in conjunction with the energy modelling to ensure a balance of visual permeability and energy performance. Other ESD design initiatives include a fresh air supply and a night purge system for each floor and the provision of fresh air at suitable times to the Winter Gardens. Response to Client and User needs Additional benefits interpreted from the brief, serving the client or users and the community The design is an innovative response to the urban design of Civic and the Griffin Legacy. It achieves this by integrating intelligent ESD initiatives within a form generated from a thorough understanding of context and the history of place making in Canberra. The form and striking façades create a landmark building that will set the standard for future developments in Canberra. As this occurs, the building will also provide an impetus and a focus for the development and enlivening of the Civic precinct.