The project has revitalised Sydney’s western fringe, connecting the CBD to Darling Harbour and restoring lost heritage.
Designed by Cox Architecture to increase the calibre of hotel accommodation in the area, the redevelopment improved convention facilities, functionality for front and back of house areas, and public amenities around the site.
The 27-storey tower responds to its prominent gateway and corner position with a carefully shaped veil that opens the view from Market Street to Pyrmont Bridge.
The curved facade responds to the tower’s role as an urban marker on the Pyrmont Bridge alignment, while maximising views over Darling Harbour.
The convention facility’s façade addresses the Darling Harbour silhouette and reinforces the horizontal nature of the Western Distributor.
The sawtooth roof form compliments surrounding heritage roofs, both current and demolished.
Refurbished public domain and Sussex Street frontage provide prominent and legible building entry with positive use of the streetscape.
The project occupies air-space over a freeway – in doing so it improves the urban environment of the site and surrounding precinct, and mitigates the impacts of traffic on the pedestrian environment.
It creates new public space through site connections between the city core and the adjacent ‘Darling Harbour’ precinct.
It reveals and makes distinct, authentic listed heritage located on the site –previously concealed and confused with 1980s faux heritage.
The key sustainable initiatives of the project include:
- Using land over infrastructure is development not taking not taking place on green or brownfield sites
- The new public space to Slip St, the heritage interpretation of our shared history and the mixed-use nature of the development ensures social sustainability
- Utilising and refurbishing existing structures reduce the embodied carbon of the project
- One of Australia’s first closed cavity façade installations that allows the western facade to embrace the views, whilst balancing the projects sustainability agenda with function room functionality (e.g. room blackout)
- A detailed reiterative process of pairing back sun shading on the tower façade ensured every piece of tower façade was passively effective
- Efficient folded plate steel roof design reduced embodied carbon
Further, the new podium reinforces the alignment and street wall of Sussex Street, while extending the ‘public domain’ onto the site itself.
And the new tower’s height is set to mediate the taller towers to its south with the lower built form to the north – acknowledging and reinforcing the morphology of the City’s form.
Finally, the shaping of the tower gestures to the adjacent pedestrian spine of Pyrmont Bridge – giving identity and marking a significant pedestrian entry point into the City.
Use Of Materials
A variety of materials is used which speaks of the sites context and place.
Materials ranging from granite, sandstone, porcelain tile, and standing seam zinc cladding – utilized in parts of the development interfacing with the public domain.
IGU glass curtains are used to the new tower inclusive of extensive external louvres providing shading.
A pre-finished fibre-cement panel is utilized extensively in lieu of the ubiquitous composite aluminium panel for the new building elements.
Surface treatments include mural scale commissioned artwork and extensive heritage ‘interpretation’ including signage revealing a ‘narrative of the place’s history’.
One of Australia’s first closed cavity façade installations that allows the western facade to embrace views, whilst balancing the projects sustainability agenda with function room functionality.
Soft landscaping includes street trees to Sussex Street and roof top landscape to terraced areas.
Project size – 21,240 m2
Site area- 3,710 m2
Project budget – $180,000,000
Completion date – 2016
Building levels – 27
COX is a design-focused contemporary architectural practice with studios located in every major Australian city and a history spanning 60 years.
Key to their ethos is supporting the public life of our cities. Cox does this by ensuring each project makes positive contributions to its public realm – giving more than it takes.
John Gollings has been the photographer of choice, the go-to guy for many Australian architects.
He is renowned for his ability to almost always compose the best shot, the one defining image that makes a building memorable, etches it into the psyche.
Click on a thumbnail image to enlarge.
Design © 2020 Cox Architecture. All Rights Reserved.| Images © 2020 John Gollings. All Rights Reserved.
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