Green buildings and upgrades reshaping office scene

12:07 PM Friday April 19, 2019 True Commercial

Mansons TCLM is targeting a 6-Green Star rating for its 155 Fanshawe Street office building. Photo / Artist’s impression

World-leading green design and sustainable refurbishment of older buildings are shaping Auckland city’s office environment this year, says Colliers International’s Auckland leasing director, Matt Lamb.

Quoted in the latest ColliersLEASE office listings publication, Lamb says sustainable building remains one of the most important issues within the fast-growing city’s office sector.

“Developers, landlords and tenants are increasingly aware of the need to offset the environmental impacts of their premises, especially given the huge demand for more quality office space as Auckland continues to grow.

As we see some incredible changes being made to not only our skyline, but to the city as we know it, we are witnessing new builds and upgrades that will benchmark the future of office space.”

Lamb says one approach to sustainability is to include it as a guiding principle from the inception of a new project, as highlighted by Mansons TCLM’s record of delivering quality green office buildings.

“Mansons developed the first 2-Green Star-certified office buildings in Auckland and has targeted top-tier Green Star ratings in all its office developments since 2007. The family-owned company has now completed or is building a total of 14 Green Star commercial buildings, comprising over 185,000sq m of gross floor area – more than any other company in New Zealand.”

Its most ambitious project to date is at 155 Fanshawe Street, a 15,500sq m office building over seven floors which is due for completion in June 2020. The company is targeting a 6-Green Star rating – the highest available, equating to world leadership in sustainable development.

The building will be home to Kiwibank’s Auckland headquarters and health insurer Southern Cross. The leases were brokered by Colliers, which also transacted the sale of the building for more than $247m to an offshore superannuation fund.

Precinct Properties is also committed to sustainability, targeting a 5-Green Star rating for its flagship office project. PwC Tower at Commercial Bay will utilise rainwater harvesting to supplement the cooling tower’s water supply; heat recovery and integrated software management systems for the hot and cold water; and extensive end-of-trip facilities.

Colliers Auckland leasing director Sam Gallaugher says another approach to sustainability is to refurbish existing office buildings.

“The adaptive reuse of an older building produces a lower environmental impact than a new build, while delivering the same level of quality, contemporary design and modern amenities. Bledisloe Property Group is one company that has achieved great success with this approach and is continuing to deliver new projects that provide premium office space with a reduced environmental footprint.”

Bledisloe undertook the restoration of 85 Fort St into an award-winning office space. Celebrated for combining modern functionality with heritage architecture from the early 1900s and 1960s, the project was awarded the Hawkins Heritage and Adaptive Reuses Property Award.

Bledisloe’s next project is 33 Federal St, the refurbishment and repositioning of a 1980s office building on a 1005sq m corner site on Federal Square in Auckland’s CBD.

Meanwhile, as Auckland’s offices become more sustainable, so too do the ways we get around the city, says Heart of the City CEO, Viv Beck.

“Change is happening quickly – whether it’s the City Rail Link, list of premium hotels opening this year or new technology providing easy, environmentally friendly ways to get around (e-scooters), the city centre is the place to be for businesses wanting to be part of this evolution.”