A 40-storey timber-steel hybrid tower has been announced for tech giant Atlassian’s new headquarters adjacent to Sydney's Central Station. The building will use 50% less embodied carbon in construction and operate off 100 percent renewable energy.
Rising 180 metres, the tower’s design is the result of a collaboration between Australian architecture practice BVN and New York’s SHoP with engineering by Eckersley O’Callaghan and TTW.
The building will consist of predominantly engineered timber to reduce embodied carbon in its materials and will consume half the energy of a conventional building due to its energy-saving design.
Founding Director of Eckersley O’Callaghan, James O’Callaghan, said “We have developed an innovative new approach to designing tall towers using a hybrid structure where the volumetric mass is timber.”
The steel and glass exoskeleton facade incorporates self-shading to reduce heat gain and solar panels to power the building. It also includes an innovative natural ventilation system that will allow air permeation through the floor plates, according to BVN co-CEO Ninotschka Titchkosky.
Green space will be a major emphasis in the building, with naturally ventilated ‘park’ floors every 5th floor and a multi-level mezzanine-floored green roof to provide occupants with direct access to nature and capture carbon in the city.
Companies and designers are increasingly moving towards the use of engineered timber for mid and high rise construction due to its sustainability and wellness advantages.
Timber acts as a permanent store of carbon whereas concrete releases large amounts of CO2 during cement production contributing significantly to global emissions.
Additionally, natural features such as timber and green space within the workplace have shown to have a positive impact on worker productivity, creativity and job satisfaction.
The development application is expected to be lodged in the coming months with construction expected to start next year.
Atlassian will be an anchor tenant expected to attract more tech companies into Sydney’s new technology precinct intended to span between Central Station and Eveleigh.
Founders Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar have long been strong advocates for clean energy in Australia.
Cannon-Brookes was involved in a bet with Elon Musk that saw Tesla install a 100 megawatt hour energy storage plant in South Australia within 100 days or it would be provided free.
Cannon-Brookes and his wife, Annie, backed an initiative, the Resilient Energy Collective, to help restore power to bushfire affected regions with a portable solar panel and Tesla battery system.
And most recently, he backed think tank, Beyond Zero Emission’s, new clean energy jobs initiative, The Million Jobs Plan.