BHP Billiton City Square - Main Tower
Spanning around 60,000 square metres of space in the iconic Brookfield Place development, BHP Billiton's tenancy in Perth is the first 6 Star Green Star - Office Interiors v1.1 rating in Western Australia - and one of the very few to achieve such a rating for a project of this scale in Australia. Originally registered for a 5 Star rating, the project team pushed the boundaries with innovative ideas, achieving four Innovation points and lifting the project to a 'World Leadership' 6 Star rating.
"Our fitout was designed not only with sustainability in mind, but also to provide a modern, open and flexible work space for our employees. The result is a world-class workplace that reflects our company's commitment to environmental stewardship and contributes to creating civic spaces that will leave a legacy for future generations."
Vice President Health Safety Environment and Community BHP Billiton Iron Ore, Brett Swayn
Just the sheer size and scale of the fitout - which achieved 20 out of a possible 21 points in the Green Star 'Materials' category - demonstrates why sustainable procurement policies can have a dramatic impact on environmental outcomes. More than 17,000 individual furniture items were procured, with 96 per cent low in volatile organic materials (VOCs). The project used 21,500 litres of low-VOC sealants and adhesives and 48,760 litres of low-VOC paint. All wood used in the building is recycled Jarrah from a Western Australian timber mill. In fact, $2.24 million in reused and certified timber was sourced.
NDY sustainability and acoustics consultant, Aaron James, says that one of their greatest challenges was managing a vast number of suppliers and subcontractors to ensure the sustainable procurement policy was implemented. "Being the first large fitout to target the sustainable timber and fitout VOC credits meant that we needed to educate involved parties so that they understood Green Star. The project has made the 'premium' green materials market viable - one which was previous regarded as being 'too hard'. Suppliers of furniture were given the incentive through involvement in the project to up-skill and are now able to deliver compliant materials on projects Australia-wide. The benefit has been a noticeable improvement in supply chains," Aaron says.
BHP Billiton will reduce transport emissions through 'virtual' meeting facilities, which include 41 video-conferencing facilities. The virtual conference facilities are predicted to reduce carbon emissions by 4,005 tonnes annually, which equates to removing 1,430 cars off the road each year.
The open plan layout of BHP Billiton's new office gives staff a variety of workspaces. For every employee workstation, the provision of two other spaces are available for employee use, including 400 plus meeting rooms, many with video-conferencing facilities. Level 45 is a flexible, mixed-use zone made up of lunch areas, lounges, a business centre and quiet area, which all cater to BHP Billiton's diverse travelling workforce. More than 3,800 square metres of breakout and respite space is equal to 6.1 per cent of the net lettable area. The open plan layout encourages incidental conversation between employees who would not normally interact.
"There is a series of stairs and voids that run up the centre of the building so not only are you connected horizontally across the floor plate, you're connected vertically up through the building," says Andrew Low, Principal at HASSELL. "This reinforces that BHP is a connected single entity. The design encourages people to move through the hub, to the lifts and the stairs so that they actually rub shoulders with each other and share information."
Learn more about BHP Billiton's fitout in an episode of NDY TV.
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