39 Hunter Street

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uilt in 1916 as the prestigious headquarters of Perpetual Trustees, 39 Hunter Street in Sydney, Australia is a seven storey sandstone commercial property.

Poor thing; it’s been ‘modernized’ three times.

These historic interventions saw the light voids largely filled in, the ornate coffered ceiling concealed behind a commercial tiled ceiling, and a maze of mechanical and electrical services introduced.

With no provision for onsite parking and the interior spaces rendered cramped and dark, the building required a significant upgrade to remain commercially and functionally viable.

Architects Jackson Teece were entrusted to lead the project.

They assembled a top-notch team of safe hands that included Kador Group, ARUP, Hyder, EMS, and JCK Project Management.

Between them, they developed a number of key design initiatives:

  • a new void was cut through the building to introduce more natural light
  • suspended tile ceilings were removed to reveal the heritage ceilings
  • a flexible contemporary work environment was created
  • a new entry experience and disabled access were provided

Of high importance to the project’s success, were the newly incorporated sustainability features that included:

  • onsite power generation for peak load management
  • minimisation of water use
  • improve indoor air quality
  • deployment of low VOC emission materials
  • energy efficient services including lighting, water use, and power consumption

Self-transport was encouraged by provision of extensive bike and shower facilities.

This contemporary adaptation of 39 Hunter Street achieved Australia’s first 6-star Green- Star Heritage Commercial rating.

That’s no easy feat.

With its heritage presence assured and a new single tenant, this ground-breaking project demonstrates the potential to revitalize heritage buildings through the application of innovative environmentally sustainable design.

Project Details

Project size – 6,500 m2
Completion date – 2010
Building levels – 7

Project Team

Architecture and Interior Design

Jackson Teece

Jackson Teece is an award-winning design consultancy with studios in Sydney, Newcastle, and Brisbane and an expanding client base throughout Asia Pacific. They offer architecture, interior design, urban design, and heritage conservation services.

Since their establishment in 1971, Jackson Teece has acquired extensive experience in the delivery of large-scale, sensitive and complex projects in both public and private sectors.

Their project engagement typically commences at the master plan phase and continues through design development, construction, and delivery.



Sharrin Rees

Sharrin Rees (1952 – 2016) was a pioneer in interior architectural photography, bringing a unique eye for design and detail to every project she worked on. Her photographs often stood out from the rest, always capturing the project’s story in a unique, poetic, and delightful way.

Photo Gallery

Click on a thumbnail image to enlarge.

Design © 2020 Jackson Teece. All Rights Reserved.| Images © 2020 Sharrin Rees. All Rights Reserved.

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