Aurora Place is the common name of Renzo Piano's award-winning office tower and residential block on Sydney's Macquarie Street. Its official name is the ABN AMRO building, after its principal tenant. The 41-storey structure is 218 m high to the top of the spire and 188 m to the roof. The building has an unusual geometric shape where not one panel is parallel to any grid. The east façade bulges out slightly from its base, reaching its maximum width at the top floors. The curved and twisted shape of east façade is aimed to correspond spatially with Sydney Opera House and to represent the sublime marine environment of the harbour. The exterior glass curtain-wall extends beyond the main frame, creating an illusion of its independence. The steel spire attached to the north facade is 75 m in length.
The building was built on the site of the former NSW Government Office Block by Bovis Lend Lease. The assumptions of a planned tower were first presented to the Central Sydney Planning Committee in 1996, when three main architects: Mark Carroll, Shunji Ishida and Renzo Piano put forward the innovative project. The building was sold in January 2001 for $485 million. Aurora Place was the winner of prestigious 2002 Property Council of Australia Rider Hunt Award, handled out for technical and financial qualities.
Materials that are used for this building were unique compared to its neighbours, Chifley Tower and Governor Phillip Tower . The façade which makes up the primary component of the building is the milky white fritted glass which has been laminated. The aesthetics of the material gives a visual metaphor of a sail. It is inspired by the tiling of the Sydney Opera House, which is less than half a mile to the north. Terracotta tiles makes up much of the lower section of the building to contrast the white dominated glass cladding. It also reconciles the orange-clad lobby and the residential complex.
The son of Mulpha Australia - a property owning company that owns the private exclusive Hayman Island in the Great Barrier Reef and the nearby Intercontinental Sydney, lives here in an unknown apartment in Aurora Place.
On June 2 2009, French urban climber Alain Roberts scaled this building in protest against climate change.
ABN Amro Tower (Aurora Place) General Address Corner of Macquarie & Bent Streets Locale Central Business District, Sydney Status Built Use Office Begun 1997 Completed 2000 Structure Façade Glass curtain wall Architectural Style Statistics Roof 188.8 m (479 feet) Pinnacle/Spire 219 m (718 feet) Antenna n/a Highest occupied floor tba Floors 41 Floor Area 123 m Floor to floor Companies Architects Renzo Piano Building Workshop in association with Innovarchi Architects, Sydney and Lend Lease Design Group (TSG) Developers Bovis Lend Lease East Asia Property Group Mirvac Group (Residential only) Project Manager Bovis Lend Lease Owners Structural Engineers Lend Lease Design Group, Ove Arup and Partners Taylor, Thompson & Whitting other
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