GPT to build Australia’s largest timber tower

GPT to build Australia’s largest timber tower

31 May 2019

Diversified property major GPT Group will build Australia’s largest timber building, a premium 12-level office tower, on top of the Melbourne Central shopping mall, which itself sits above a metro tunnel train station, reports The Sydney Morning Herald.

The new tower – called Frame – will be Melbourne’s first premium office tower to use timber and it will sit among rivalling towers being currently built by Mirvac, Dexus and Charter Hall in the city’s central business district.

Timber construction has taken off around the country featuring in a new wave of new buildings, including International House Sydney in Barangaroo by Lendlease and Bates Smart’s CLT tower at 25 King Street in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley.

Engineered timber offers weight, design and sustainability advantages, helping speed up construction and reduce waste, making it the rising star of commercial real estate design.

Designed by the award-winning architecture and urban design practice ARM Architecture, Frame will feature a hotel-inspired skylobby on level five and floor plates of approximately 2,000 square metres.

GPT’s Head of Office & Logistics Matthew Faddy said Frame will be a ground-breaking office building, connected to elevated garden spaces and a new rooftop retail, entertainment and dining precinct at Melbourne Central.

“Frame will deliver a superior level of amenity to any workplace in Australia. It provides a fully integrated office, retail and cultural environment that offers more than just deskspace,” said Mr Faddy.

“Frame will feature abundant natural light and a warehouse-style environment, with the design of the building aimed to improve the sense of well-being of its occupants.”

GPT owns a series of interconnected buildings spanning two city blocks that make up Melbourne Central.

ARM Architecture Principal Ian McDougall said Frame’s forward-thinking design addresses the needs of the new, socially conscious generation of worker, promoting wellness and encouraging positive social exchange through green open spaces and dedicated wellbeing retail offerings.

“The new rooftop retail precinct is a unique concept where city dwellers and visitors gather to learn, interact, have fun and be inspired. It is a meeting place between workers and the rest of the city,” he said.

The building will deliver a 5 Star NABERS Energy and Water Rating, a 5 Star Green Star, and WELL Gold Standard.

Construction of the building is anticipated to start by the end of 2019 with GPT aiming for completion in late 2021.

Colliers International has been appointed as leasing agents for the new timber building, actively seeking an anchor tenant with expansive 2000sq m floorplates on offer.