Kane Constructions has been shortlisted to tender for a new $40 million two-storey office building in the gardens of Parliament House, Melbourne.
Designed by Peter Elliott Architecture and Urban Design in collaboration with Taylor Cullity Lethlean, the building will provide additional office space for members of parliament and replace an existing tennis court and a temporary structure, known as “the chook shed,” that was erected during the 1970s.
The pincer-shaped structure will be sunken behind Parliament House and will feature a rooftop garden with a path and a 1,250-square-metre courtyard to assimilate the building with its garden surroundings. The landscaping in the rooftop garden will feature both native Australian plants and some areas of lawn.
The 4,000-square-metre project contains offices for around 100 members of parliament. The offices are organized in clusters in order to accommodate the needs of the MPs, and each office has an operable window and a view out onto either the courtyard or the gardens.
The building has been designed with a 5 Star Green Star rating and incorporates a range of measures to boost its sustainable attributes. The sunken position of the building and its rooftop garden will increase energy efficiency and the design team is also investigating a geo-exchange system. The interiors will have a 6 Star Green Star rating and there is a strong focus on sourcing materials locally, preferably within Victoria.
The project has been strongly influenced by the nearby Yuncken Freeman Architects’ 1969 Cardinal Knox Centre project, which was similarly embedded in order to reduce its impact on existing buildings.The project has bipartisan support, has been submitted for heritage approval and is targeting a completion date in December 2017.
In 2010 Kane teamed with Peter Elliott Architecture and Urban Design to deliver a $20 million adaptive re-use and expansion of the Francis Ormond Building at RMIT.