The design challenge was to build on top of an existing building which had columns and a central lift core integrated into its original design restricting floorplate flexibility and reducing connectivity. Our solution was to place a series of steel transfer trusses on top of the existing structure. This allowed the floorplate to cantilever beyond the existing building, increasing the floor area and aligning with the street wall while also providing flexibility with the column grid.
A steel structure was chosen to avoid increasing the load on the existing structure. The lifts were relocated to the exterior of the building and enclosed in a vertical glass volume to express the building’s vertical movement while enlivening the Ultimo Pedestrian Network.
Bates Smart Project Director, Philip Vivian commented on the design form:
"Located diagonally across from the new Frank Gehry UTS building, the design needed a strong presence. The architectural form reinterprets the semi-industrial linear forms of historic Haymarket to create a contemporary building that respects the diverse scale and context of the area.
"The form is articulated into a series of seemingly random, stacked, horizontal volumes of varying heights. Each horizontal layer is expressed by a different solar shading system, creating a layered effect of stacked, linear boxes."
The lobby is a transparent glass volume beneath the building, between the lifts and original structure. A dramatic public artwork by Lucas Grogan on the building wall frames the lobby.
The building has achieved a 5 Star Green Star rating, incorporating passive solar shading, and chilled beam cooling.