Following his panel at Future Cities Summit for the Property Council of Australia, Design Partner Scott Duncan speaks with the Sydney Morning Herald about designing the most significant development in the city’s central business district in more than a decade, aimed to attract 15,000 employees when complete in 2028. The $3 billion project, called Central Place Sydney, is located in the heart of the city’s Tech Central innovation hub. Duncan emphasized the need to “create experiences that people can’t get at home or online. We are competing with the screen, which is an incredibly powerful magnet for our attention.”
The collaboration between SOM and Australian architects Fender Katsalidis, Frasers Property, and Dexus will transform the 9,632-square-meter site into a thriving innovation hub. Sustainability takes center stage in the design, with about one-sixth of the 133,500-square-meter development naturally ventilated. Central Place incorporates innovative solutions such as using black soldier fly larvae to convert food waste into carbon-reduced compost, providing on-site pet minding services, and offering fresh air and open spaces for the workforce.
In the interview, Duncan highlights the implementation of passive shading techniques in the design of Central Place Sydney. Extensive research and analysis were conducted, using an algorithm to determine the optimal placement of smart awnings. These awnings effectively block direct sunlight while preserving panoramic views, creating a maintainable and energy-efficient design.
In addition to its sustainability features, Central Place Sydney prioritizes employee well-being and engagement. Internal cafes and meditation spaces will foster social interaction and offer moments of relaxation. The design departs from traditional office blocks, embracing communal aspects and providing access to light and views. By creating a vibrant and flexible environment, the development aims to attract companies in cutting-edge fields, positioning itself as a catalyst for job creation.
Lead photo credit: © Edwina Pickles