Archive / 2015
Monday 21 December 2015
Sydney welcomes first stage of revitalised Tumbalong Park

The transformation of Darling Harbour into one of the world’s best places to live, meet and be entertained is well underway, with the delivery of the new and improved Tumbalong Park which was opened to the public on 19 December.

HASSELL is pleased to be involved in the revitalisation of the park and in the 20ha, $3.4 billion renewal of this vital part of Sydney.

Together with Populous, we’re responsible for the urban design of Darling Harbour, as well as the integrated design for the $1.5 billion ICC Sydney destination. The project is being delivered by the NSW State Government (through Infrastructure NSW) in partnership with Darling Harbour Live.

HASSELL designed the public realm for the precinct. Our design expands the existing park into a commanding, 3,000 sqm gathering place for Sydney. More people than ever will be able to soak up the atmosphere at exciting live, outdoor, cultural and celebratory events throughout the year.

The improved Tumbalong Park will feature new turf, pedestrian walkways and the return of ‘Fred the Fig’, a beloved 100-year-old Port Jackson fig tree. A new stage for public events in the park will be delivered over the coming months, with the rest of the public space expected for completion in September 2016.

Thursday 10 December 2015
Landmark year for Medibank workplace design

2015 was a landmark year for award-winning workplace design at HASSELL, with the Medibank workplace recognised at awards ceremonies around the globe.

The innovative, health-based workplace, has earned multiple national and international awards, from Australia to Singapore, to the United Kingdom.

Internationally it’s won twice – at the WIN Awards in London this month, and also at the INSIDE Awards in Singapore last month.

In Australia the workplace also won twice at the coveted Interior Design Excellence Awards for its workplace and sustainable design, and was commended for Interior Architecture at the Australian Institute of Architects' Awards.

The wins demonstrate the value HASSELL design thinking brings organisations that aspire to create the best workplace environments – attracting and retaining outstanding talent and helping to drive innovation and business performance.

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Friday 4 December 2015
Ovolo Woolloomooloo Hotel opens in Sydney

The Ovolo Woolloomooloo Hotel officially opened in Sydney, Australia this week.

HASSELL completely transformed the site’s existing hotel to appeal to a new generation of guests while reinvigorating the iconic Finger Wharf where the hotel is located.

The Ovolo guest was placed at the heart of the design process, and it embodies everything the brand stands for - young, energetic, boutique, cheeky and accessible.

After the success of Ovolo Laneways Hotel in Melbourne, Hong Kong-based operators, Ovolo Group, again partnered with HASSELL to realise a bold vision.

Find out more about the Ovolo Group and their suite of hotels.

Wednesday 2 December 2015
Peter Lee recognised for outstanding contribution to architecture

HASSELL Principal and Board Director Peter Lee, has been awarded the Architects Board of Western Australia Award for his outstanding contribution to the field of architecture.

The Board Award is presented annually to an architect who has made a significant contribution to the profession and community.

Peter has been instrumental in shaping many of Perth’s most significant buildings and places. Peter has been involved in a number of top-tier workplaces such as Brookfield Place and one40William, as well as a number of city railway stations, hotel developments, masterplans, and is currently delivering the new 60,000 seat Perth Stadium – a collaboration between HASSELL, Cox Architecture, and HKS.

For more on the awards click here.

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Wednesday 2 December 2015
Medibank workplace celebrated at WIN Awards

The Medibank workplace has won at the World Interior News Awards in London, adding to an impressive list of recent Australian and international awards.

The global WIN awards recognise international design excellence in interior design, and Medibank Place won in the Workspace interiors - Greater than 10,000 square metres category. 

The HASSELL design for Medibank’s workplace transformed the way the company worked to encourage healthier, more collaborative working for its people.

Last month Medibank won a number of awards including the global INSIDE awards in Singapore and the Australian IDEA Awards.

For more on the awards click here

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Friday 27 November 2015
Full throttle for Higher Education

Racing cars, academia and performance engineering are all in a day’s work for the HASSELL team following some exciting international project developments with top universities.

In the UK, HASSELL has been selected by the University of Bolton to design its new Centre for Advanced Performance Engineering - one of its most ambitious and visionary projects to date. The University wants to deliver an inspiring centre of teaching and learning that blurs the boundaries between academia and the motorsport industry and establishes a springboard from which fledgling industries can launch and thrive.

In the southern hempisphere, HASSELL is working  with the University of Western Australia to develop a vision for its A$80 million EZONE project which aspires to create a globally recognised centre of engineering innovation and creativity.

These projects reinforce a growing portfolio of world-leading engineering and science faculties designed by HASSELL including the University of Brighton’s Centre for Advanced Engineering in the UK, the multi-award-winning Advanced Engineering Building at University of Queensland and the Flinders at Tonsley School of Computer Science, Engineering and Mathematics in Adelaide, South Australia.

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Wednesday 25 November 2015
Welcome Principal Jutta Kehrer

We're excited to welcome acclaimed Landscape Architect Jutta Kehrer who has recently joined HASSELL as Principal, and is based in our Hong Kong studio. 

Jutta will be taking on the senior leadership position for the Landscape Architecture team in Greater China, and will be overseeing the design excellence for both the Hong Kong and Shanghai studios. 

Trained in Germany, Jutta has practiced Landscape Architecture and Urban Design in Germany, the Netherlands, Japan and Australia, in addition to extensive experience in China. She is actively engaged in academic debate, as both a writer and lecturer in Europe, Asia, Australia, challenging and promoting an international design dialogue.

“Jutta is an invaluable addition to our global team and a strong experienced landscape architect for our China studios. Apart from being a world class designer, she is inherently client focused and a great team leader and manager,” said Angus Bruce, Head of Landscape Architecture at HASSELL. 

Her experience crosses a range of project typologies and scales, including urban design, public realm and hospitality, and she is driven by the success of cross disciplinary teams, where different knowledge is drawn together across a range of design fields and professional expertise.

“Jutta’s vast global experience and great understanding of working with clients in different markets within different cultures will be of great benefit to all the projects she will be working on and all our clients,” said Angus. 

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Wednesday 25 November 2015
Redesigning the face of Singapore’s hospitality scene

Paul Semple and Matthew Shang, Principals at HASSELL, have built reputations as trailblazers of Singapore’s luxury hospitality scene. The pair have changed the face of the city’s most exciting and defining venues since arriving in Singapore over a decade ago.

Together, Paul and Matthew are the design minds behind some of the city’s most talked about venues that are getting global recognition. Manhattan Bar, modelled as a classic American cocktail bar evoking the ‘golden age’ of cocktail making, was recently listed among the world’s top 50 bars

They also redesigned Singapore’s The Club Hotel, located in an iconic heritage building in one of Singapore’s most popular bar and dining districts. The hotel was reopened in mid-2015 following a complete refurbishment that showcases Matthew and Paul’s innovative vision of the hotel as a collection of food and beverage venues with supporting guest rooms, unlike anything else in the area. 

Paul and Matthew come to HASSELL from Distillery, the studio they founded in Singapore in 2008. In a short time Distillery became eponymous with high end, luxury hospitality, resort, retail, food and beverage and residential design. They’ve worked with major brands like Alila, Four Seasons, Hyatt, The Hour Glass and Ulysee Nardin.

In July 2015, Distillery took the next step in its evolution and merged with HASSELL, a move that Paul and Matthew saw as a natural progression given the practice’s shared design aspirations and culture. 

“We’re passionate about the creative process and approach each new design with curiosity and as a journey of discovery,” says Paul. “We’re informed by context, evidence, experience and culture and we work collaboratively with clients to create lasting impressions for customers and guests.” 

Singapore itself is an inspiration for the designers. “Living in this dynamic city imbues our work with vibrance and energy,” says Paul.

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Friday 20 November 2015
Medibank workplace wins at IDEA awards

The health-based Medibank workplace has won two awards in the workplace category at the Interior Design Excellence Awards, Australia’s leading interior design awards. Medibank took out the Workplace - over 1000sqm award and the Sustainability award.

The win follows on from a host of other awards that Medibank Place has recently won, including best workplace at the coveted INSIDE awards earlier this month.

The HASSELL vision for Medibank was part of a major cultural change within the leading health insurer’s Melbourne head office, where the interiors have completely transformed the way the entire organisation operates from the inside out.

“The design for Medibank was driven by an aspiration to create one of the healthiest workplaces in the world,” said HASSELL Managing Director, Rob Backhouse.

The interior of Medibank demonstrates a growing trend where the ‘work’ is driving the design of commercial buildings.

“Medibank has been designed to be collaborative, technologically enabled and puts people’s health and well-being at its very heart,” said Rob.

For more on the IDEA awards click here

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Thursday 19 November 2015
Introducing HASSELL Principal: Richard Mullane

By 2050, 70 percent of the world’s population will be living in cities. And nowhere is this urban migration happening faster than in China.

Recently promoted HASSELL Principal Richard Mullane is on the front line of this shift. He and his Shanghai-based team are helping some of China’s largest cities develop urban strategies to accommodate their rapidly growing populations and make them more connected, enjoyable and prosperous places for people.

“Urban migration in China is outpacing any other population shift in modern history,” said Richard. “In a very small space of time, China has moved from a rural society to an urban one.

“As an urban designer based in Shanghai, I am interested in the reasons behind this shift, but also in making sure cities are able to accommodate it in a sustainable way.

“Many cities around the world - and particularly in China - have been built around their major economic drivers. A large part of our work is to help clients address this and incorporate the additional layers that make cities great places to live.

“It’s about understanding the history and culture of a place, the lifestyle and aspirations of the people that live there and the natural systems that have influenced the landscape. Our role as an integrated design team is to stitch all these elements together into a narrative that helps shape the region’s future.”

“A large part of this is consultation and engagement to give urban residents a stake in shaping their own city,” said Richard.

Richard has worked on a number of high profile infrastructure and urban regeneration projects in China including the Qianhai Metro Rail project currently underway in Shenzhen. The project will deliver eight new underground metro stations that integrate seamlessly into the surrounding mixed-use sites and a broader sub-surface pedestrian network.

Richard has also been involved in a variety of international projects that are shaping cities outside China, including Korea, Australia, and the United Kingdom. One such example is the reimagining of a dilapidated one-kilometer mall - Seunsangga Citywalk - in the heart of Seoul.

“The global team drew on experience from across the practice to deliver a highly imaginative concept that turned an urban relic from something which divided the city into something that stitched it back together,” says Richard. 

Other global focuses for Richard include the urban revitalisation of the City of Newcastle in Australia and a master plan that is unifying the five disparate campuses of the University of Brighton in the UK, shaping a new era for the university’s students and staff. 

Looking to the future, Richard believes strongly that policymakers, planners and key decision makers need to make cities a priority.

“Good design is critical to ensuring cities remain competitive and offer a high quality of life for the people that live there. We have an opportunity to shape them, but we need to act now to address growing complexity and ensure a long-term and sustainable future.”

Take a further look into the changes facing China and view a video featuring Richard Mullane here

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Thursday 5 November 2015
HASSELL design celebrated at AIA National Awards

HASSELL is celebrating two wins, and two commendations, at the Australian Institute of Architects’ 2015 National Architecture Awards tonight.

The awards ceremony took place at The University of Queensland’s Advanced Engineering Building, designed by HASSELL and Richard Kirk Architect, and celebrated excellence in architecture across Australia in 14 categories.

The jury congratulated HASSELL which took out two awards for the University of Queensland's Global Change Institutute, winning the coveted David Oppenheim Award for Sustainable Architecture and the award for Interior Architecture.

Medibank’s Melbourne workplace was commended in the Interior Architecture category, and the Fiona Stanley Hospital in Perth, Western Australia was commended in the Public Architecture category.

“The wins and commendations at AIA tonight demonstrate the value HASSELL design thinking brings workplaces, universities, and health facilities across Australia,” said Mark Loughnan, Head of Architecture at HASSELL.

“HASSELL is committed to creating exceptional places that people enjoy working, living, healing and learning in, and these projects have delivered immeasurable value to communities across the nation.”

For more on the awards visit the Australian Institute of Architects.

Check out AIA's video of the UQ's GCI that was aired at the ceremony. 

Thursday 5 November 2015
Medibank wins best office at Inside World Festival of Interiors

This week HASSELL joins leading design practices celebrating exceptional workplace, hospitality, health, and education design at the World Architecture Festival and the INSIDE World Festival of Interiors in Singapore.

’s health-based workplace was acknowledged for its innovative design, winning the award for best office. “Medibank Place is a workplace that puts the health of people at its heart,” said HASSELL Managing Director, Rob Backhouse.

“The health and well-being of people is a growing priority for organisations around the world, and we are really proud Medibank Place continues to be held up as an international exemplar.”

Wednesday 4 November 2015
It’s a go for 60 Martin Place

Australia’s most progressive new commercial building and workplace, 60 Martin Place, has been given the green light for development by Investa Office and Gwynvill Group, which has moved from an LEP amendment to a Stage two DA approval by the City of Sydney this week.

The HASSELL concept for the $800 million commercial development is part of many revitalising projects that HASSELL is involved in to reshape the face of Sydney.

“Our design for 60 Martin Place creates a strong vision for Sydney’s skyline and will offer tenants an unmatched workplace experience with sweeping views across the Sydney Harbour. It will also form a key part of the city’s plans to revitalise Martin Place,” said Head of Design for Architecture, Tony Grist. 

Friday 30 October 2015
Rethinking workplace capacity

Last week HASSELL and ARUP released thought provoking new research, suggesting a rethink of current building codes that impact how we arrange work spaces. Exploring the issues further could unlock new forms of value in workplaces.

Cracking the Capacity Code: Rethinking building occupancy in a new era of work has received interest from thought leaders across the property industry including developers, builders, engineers, certifiers and tenants. It has already sparked robust discussion among attendees at the report launch held in the HASSELL Melbourne studio.

“We’re experiencing denser office working environments and organisations that have adopted flexible working are potentially at risk of exceeding current building regulations and certifications,” said Dr Agustin Chevez, Senior Researcher at HASSELL.

“The potential of contemporary offices could be increased by rethinking the way buildings are currently arranged.”

The strong interest in this initial research at the launch demonstrates the need to reconsider the current design standards and codes in Australia, rethinking the way capacity is understood and nominated. The next steps of the research will be to convene further discussions, including a range of industry perspectives, to consider how these new patterns of occupancy could be reflected in building codes and regulations in the future.

Download the research here

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Thursday 22 October 2015
Design thinking on display

The HASSELL concept for 60 Martin Place in Sydney, has been included in an exhibition of Australia’s most influential projects of the past 60 years that involves alumni contributions from the University of New South Wales.

Architecture by Hand and Mind: 60 Years of Architecture hosted by UNSW uncovers never before seen models and sketches of the projects that have made – or will make – a significant contribution to the urban character of our cities.

Head of Architecture at HASSELL, Tony Grist, and design lead on 60 Martin Place said the contribution of UNSW Alumni and Professor of Practice Ken Maher continues to add significantly to our design thinking and the exhibition will showcase the HASSELL design process that led to the final concept for the progressive office tower.

“Our design thinking for 60 Martin Place involved a highly imaginative response to the brief. The concept had to work on multiple levels. It had to be a creative addition to the Sydney skyline, while responding sensitively to its surrounding precinct, and be an active, welcoming space that people want to engage with as they walk through the heart of the city,” Tony said.

Read here for more information and event details on the exhibition.

Monday 19 October 2015
Medibank wins at AILA

Integrated thinking has secured HASSELL another top award for Medibank Place in Melbourne, Australia – this time for Urban Design at the 2015 Victorian Landscape Architecture Awards.

The jury commended the role Medibank Place has played in establishing a new pedestrian gateway to Melbourne’s Docklands, helping to activate an underused part of the city.

Read here for more on the awards.

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Tuesday 13 October 2015
Leading sustainable design celebrated

​Last week Australia’s first integrated green roof, education and research facility, the Burnley Living Roofs was recognised at the 2015 Sustainability Awards taking out the award for Landscape Design.

The Burnley Living Roofs, designed by HASSELL in partnership with the University of Melbourne, was congratulated for its contribution to the advancement of green infrastructure.

The jury said the project is an important example of the wider benefits achievable through green roof design.

“This project represents the future of urban landscaping and the successful integration of rooftop green infrastructure. This kind of research is vital to ensure green infrastructure moves beyond aesthetics to becoming vital in the efficiency and ongoing performance of buildings in reducing energy use, improving thermal comfort and avoiding heat island effect,” said the jury.

Design lead on the project, Matthew Mackay, Senior Associate at HASSELL, said the win highlights the potential of green interventions.

“HASSELL is committed to making exceptional cities, and the Burnley Living Roofs shows how the built environment can contribute to and benefit from urban green space, providing a reference point for green infrastructure into the future,”  Matthew said.

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Monday 5 October 2015
2015 Sydney Architecture Festival

Today Zoey Chen, an aspiring young architect from our Sydney studio, was recognised for her exceptional design work, awarded with the coveted 2015 Architects Medallion at the Sydney Architecture Festival in Australia.

The Architects Medallion is awarded annually by the NSW Architects Registration Board. The winner is decided by a selection committee from outstanding Master of Architecture graduates across New South Wales. 

Zoey was presented with the award at the World Architecture Day celebration at Sydney’s iconic Opera House, and represented HASSELL at the event.     

HASSELL has joined leading design thinkers, policymakers and professionals throughout the Sydney Architecture Festival to discuss the role architecture plays in creating exceptional cities. Ken Maher, HASSELL Fellow and David Tickle, global head of Urban Design at HASSELL, contributed to a number of thought-provoking panel discussions. 

Sydney is presently going through an immense period of growth and revitalisation, which was a key theme at the festival. HASSELL is involved in a number of key projects that are transforming Sydney such as Darling Harbour Live and the Sydney Light Rail, reflecting the prominent role that architecture and design play in making cities enjoyable for people.

Find out more about the Sydney Architecture Festival

Check out our video that was premiered at the festival

Wednesday 30 September 2015
Kevin Lloyd joins HASSELL

Kevin Lloyd, an exceptionally talented British architect, has joined HASSELL.

He joins our Brisbane studio as Principal, bringing an impressive portfolio of high profile projects and design expertise. His 25 year career as an architect has seen him work across a range of sectors in the United Kingdom, Middle East, and internationally.

Prior to joining HASSELL he was Director at John McAslan and Partners in London for eight years, and was involved in a collection of award winning rail, commercial, residential, high-rise, hotel, cultural and mixed-use schemes.

His expertise in large-scale, international projects was instrumental in developing a collection of new of buildings in Qatar, providing over 120,000 sqm of new development as part of an ambitious plan to regenerate Doha City centre. Kevin's work on the Msheireb Downtown Doha project included the design of two significant hospitality projects, the Park Hyatt Hotel and Mandarin Oriental Hotel.

Other key projects he worked on while at JMP included the workplace design for Al Jazeera’s headquarters in London, United Kingdom, and a master plan in Belfast, Northern Ireland to create a new transport interchange and mixed use development, as well as a series of new high value residential projects in London.

“It’s great to have Kevin on board with his strong design expertise and a track record delivering complex projects of international significance,” said Head of Design Mark Loughnan.

“Kevin’s international experience across global cities will bring new perspectives on the work we deliver our clients, both nationally and internationally. Kevin will also add significant and diverse design leadership to our Brisbane studio.”

Kevin said he was very excited to be joining HASSELL assisting in our commitment to deliver high quality design.

“I'm looking forward to working with the team to build upon the great work they have delivered and continuing to work to define an architecture that is both international in its approach, but with consideration for its place and identity," Kevin said.

He will officially begin working from the Brisbane studio from October 19th.

Friday 25 September 2015
HASSELL takes top place at the Australian Urban Design Awards

HASSELL has reinforced its position as one of the country’s leading city shapers taking out top awards at the Australian Urban Design Awards in Melbourne last night.

The concept for Sunshine Coast Light Rail, developed in partnership with Sunshine Coast Council took out the Award for Policies, Program or Concept Large Scale. HASSELL also received the Award for Delivered Outcomes Large Scale for Brookfield Place in partnership with Fitzpatrick + Partners.

These integrated schemes are delivering revitalised and activated public spaces for communities, transforming how people navigate and enjoy cities.

Brookfield Place has enlivened Perth’s CBD, creating an exciting new destination, which attracts people by the thousands who go there to work, eat, drink and relax.

On the east coast of Australia, the Sunshine Coast Light Rail concept has demonstrated how light rail could transform the region reducing traffic congestion and creating opportunities to reconnect the community with the coast and key centres.

“At a time when Australia is shining a light firmly on creating sustainable cities, HASSELL is reinforcing its position as one of the world’s leading urban thinkers,” said global head of Urban Design at HASSELL, David Tickle. 

“Clients are increasingly understanding the value we bring to complex city-shaping projects through our integrated design thinking. It’s a really exciting time to be involved in projects of this scale,” said David.

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Thursday 24 September 2015
HASSELL unlocks the urban housing challenge

A new report released this week by HASSELL has the potential to deliver up to 1,000,000 new homes and, more importantly, up to 1000 great neighbourhoods in London, Shanghai and Sydney.

The Urban Housing Challenge report presents a new solution to help cities sustainably meet the challenges of urbanisation, providing greater access to private and shared open space and increasing proximity to public transport and diverse housing choices.

If realised, the approach would bring 1.8 million Shanghai residents closer to parks and transport, and contribute significantly to the Chinese government’s plan to make the city greener with an additional 208 hectares of new open space.

In London, HASSELL has reimagined the classic row house to meet the demand for new community oriented, and shared open spaces.

In Sydney, the proposal would yield 5,000 new apartments and 77,000sqm of new green space for the suburb of Auburn and could be leveraged to many more to address Sydney’s current affordability crises.

HASSELL Principal and Urban Design Sector Leader, David Tickle, said the speculative research was important to expand perspectives on how urban centres become more sustainable, prosperous and liveable.

“Given the pressing need for more and better housing, we have to generate new ways of thinking about - and designing - our cities,” said David.

“It’s not that the way we are doing it now is wrong, but we are keen to push the conversation forward to create sustainable cities that are equipped to meet the needs of a growing population.”

Read the report here.  

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Tuesday 22 September 2015
Green light for Advanced Engineering Centre in the UK

HASSELL is one step closer to delivering a world-class teaching and research space for the next generation of engineers.

The state-of-the-art Advanced Engineering Centre (AEC) at the University of Brighton’s Moulsecoomb Campus in the South East of England has received planning approval by council and construction will begin later this year.

The AEC will support the expansion and enhancement of a long-term partnership between global engineering firm, Ricardo and the University of Brighton. Highlights of the partnership include the design and development of novel low-carbon internal combustion systems, with the wider objectives of advancing technological knowledge and supporting the advanced training needs of emerging engineers.

Julian Gitsham, HASSELL Principal, said that the University of Brighton was ambitious to create world-class facilities for its students and staff.

“The University of Brighton is transforming the campus experience to create a world-class centre of learning and discovery that will entice, excite and inspire the best international talent,” Julian said.

“The AEC establishes a bold new landmark for the university and will become the cornerstone of the Moulsecoomb campus, a symbol of the University’s vision to improve the student experience."

HASSELL has helped the University unlock the full potential of its five sites across Brighton, Hastings and Eastbourne with a master plan that enlivens and creates a unique identity for each campus. The AEC is the first step towards making this vision a reality.

Mike Clark, the university’s Director of Estate and Facilities Management, said: “I am delighted that the Planning Committee has unanimously approved our planning application and endorsed the university’s desire to seek a solution of the highest design quality.”

The Advanced Engineering Building is scheduled for completion in December 2016.

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Thursday 17 September 2015
Introducing Lucy O'Driscoll: HASSELL Principal

The higher education sector is constantly evolving, with institutions striving to keep pace with the changing needs of students and rapidly advancing technology. Lucy O’Driscoll, says designing agile, collaborative environments that support this shifting learning landscape has been the main focus of her 20 year career as a designer. 

Lucy, who was recently made a Principal with HASSELL, has worked closely with several of Australia’s leading universities to shape learning environments that deliver a better student experience. Over the past few years she’s been involved in projects such as the University of the Sunshine Coast’s Collaborative Futures Project in Queensland, James Cook University’s The Science Place in Queensland, and she is currently delivering a Master Plan for Monash University’s Malaysia Campus.

“The best part of my job is that I get to meet innovative thinkers who lead dynamic organisations. I get to know them and understand their aspirations and business objectives. Then I have the privilege of designing an inspiring environment that equips them to perform at their best,” Lucy says.

She sees the impact of technology on how education is delivered as an opportunity to create more agile, active and collaborative learning environments for students and staff.

“The biggest trend I see is the importance of the campus experience for today’s students and the impact this has on both formal and informal learning spaces. Remote learning means students don't need to attend lectures in a traditional theatre setting as frequently as they once did, but they come to campus to interact, socialise and engage in peer-to-peer learning,” Lucy says.

Lucy says a collaborative design outcome is the result of a collaborative process.

“Conversations with all stakeholders - including students – at each stage of the design process are critical to establishing clear aspirations and strategic goals. That helps the design team to unlock the potential of the project.”

Lucy’s collaborative approach extends beyond tertiary campuses to the delivery of large integrated science campuses such as the Ecosciences Precinct in Brisbane, Australia.

The innovative space brings 1,000 scientists from four state government agencies and six CSIRO divisions into a single, collaborative research environment to better deliver ecological research.

The result is a space that encourages knowledge exchange and discovery, clustering groups based on the nature of their work regardless of which agency they come from.

Monday 14 September 2015
City shaping projects celebrated at AILA NSW Awards

HASSELL has taken out two awards in the Urban Design category at the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (New South Wales) Awards, which took place last week in Sydney. The Darling Harbour Precinct in Sydney and the Sydney Light Rail were awarded.

These transformative projects are improving how people experience Sydney, providing better connectivity and urban character.

The jury noted in their citation that the HASSELL design for Darling Harbour Live will significantly improve the experience of its public realm, saying it “truly connects it into the fabric of the city”. 

“The strategy for the renewal of the Darling Harbour precinct is exemplary urban design - a multidisciplinary approach that both attracts visitors and delights the local community,” the jury noted.

The Sydney Light Rail was also recognised for its urban design contribution to improve Sydney.

“The 12-kilometres South East Light Rail system will address congestion and improve public transport reliability from Circular Quay through to Randwick, transforming some of Sydney’s most significant urban landscapes along the way.” 

For more on the AILA NSW Chapter awards read here

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Thursday 10 September 2015
HASSELL and Karen Millen shake up the London High Street

HASSELL has unveiled its window installation for Karen Millen’s flagship London retail store as part of the RIBA Regent Street Windows project 2015. The event sees the iconic Regent Street transformed by 13 architectural installations, from September 7-27.

The HASSELL concept celebrates the femininity and craftsmanship synonymous with the Karen Millen brand.

Playing with dramatic forms, beautiful patterns and shifting light, HASSELL wanted shoppers to be drawn in and immersed by the window display. It creates a theatrical spectacle that evokes a sense of curiosity about Karen Millen’s Autumn/Winter 15 collection.

HASSELL collaborated with Studio XAG to give Karen Millen’s 30m window front a textural twist. Julian Gitsham, HASSELL Principal said the biggest challenge in creating the installation was the immense size of the space.

“It’s one of the largest window displays on Regent Street and we set out to design something that would work through the complete 30m façade. We wanted it to be one strong sculpture which has an impact when taken as a whole, but also enough complexity to draw you in,” said Julian.

“We have also embraced the opportunity to work with fabric, which is a unique experience for us as architects. Looking at drapery and the cut and fall of cloth has been quite an adventure.”

Read more on RIBA Windows and listen to a podcast by Sarah Willats about the HASSELL concept. 

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Thursday 3 September 2015
Darling Harbour Live marks major milestone

The AUD$3.4 billion revitalisation of Sydney’s Darling Harbour is one step closer this week with the completion of the final level of the International Convention Centre Sydney (ICC Sydney). 

NSW Premier Michael Baird celebrated the major milestone for the Darling Harbour Live project with a topping out ceremony at the site. The next phase of construction will see the ICC Sydney exhibition roof trusses lifted and secured atop the centre, which will be some of the largest roof lifts ever executed in Australia. 

“By the end of next year, we'll have a state-of-the-art convention centre that truly befits a global city and one that cements Sydney as the No.1 place to do business," said Michael Baird.

Forming a critical part of Darling Harbour’s regeneration project, The ICC Sydney suite of buildings, which open in December 2016, will be Asia Pacific’s premier convention, exhibition and entertainment precinct, designed by HASSELL and Populous. 

Once complete visitors to Darling Harbour Live and the ICC Sydney will experience a collection of striking contemporary places and spaces that will host innovative business, entertainment and arts events on the city’s iconic waterfront adjacent to the CBD, connected to public transport and the airport. 

“The revitalisation of Darling Harbour into a premium international business destination and urban public meeting place is an extraordinary once in a generation city making opportunity for which we feel a great responsibility to all of Sydney,” said HASSELL Principal, Glenn Scott. 

For more facts and updates on ICC Sydney.  

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Wednesday 26 August 2015
Workplace design on the agenda for HR professionals

Organisations need to move away from outdated workplace design models and thinking, and embrace opportunities that deliver success for businesses, says leading workplace design strategist, and HASSELL Principal, Steve Coster.

Today he joins prominent human resource thought leaders at the Australian Human Resource Institute National Convention and Exhibition in Melbourne putting workplace design on the HR agenda.

Steve will present specifically on how office design builds organisational capital. Kylie Bishop, Executive General Manager, People and Culture, Medibank, and Jon Scriven, Group Executive HR and Office of the CEO, Qantas Group present alongside Steve, showing the value created for their organisations by their new workplaces.

In Qantas’ case, their new workplace in Mascot, Sydney, has delivered 10% higher employee engagement levels compared with the Qantas average, while increasing density by 40%, reducing the real estate footprint by 30% and reducing energy and water usage by 20%.

While at Medibank, 79% of employees surveyed four months after Medibank Place in Melbourne opened reported working more collaboratively and 70% recorded feeling healthier.

Steve has been involved in the design of the most progressive workplaces throughout Australia including ANZ, Arup, HUB Australia, Medibank, Qantas, Suncorp and Transurban, and sees exceptional workplaces as actively contributing to an organisation’s success.

“Exceptional workplaces are built to deliver knowledge transfer, speed and agility, disruptive thinking and innovation, talent attraction, staff engagement, and workforce wellbeing,” says Steve.

“Designing a new workspace, or adjusting an existing one, is a unique opportunity to design the right systems, symbols and behaviours into a business.”

The AHRI takes place over four days from Tuesday 25 August to Friday 28 August at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre and will see a variety of workshops and presentations.

Find out more about the AHRI National Convention and Exhibition.

HR conference Steve
HR conference Steve
Wednesday 19 August 2015
Vale Henry Hayward

It is with great sadness that we acknowledge the passing of Henry Hayward, who died peacefully in Kent in England on 16 August 2015, at the age of 93.

Henry joined HASSELL (then Claridge, Hassell and McConnell) as an architect in 1947, and was chosen to open the firm’s first interstate office in Melbourne in 1948. Henry became an associate in 1948 and a partner in 1957.

Along with founders Philip Claridge (1884-1968), Colin Hassell (1910-2007) and Jack McConnell (1913-2005), Henry was a key player in the early days of HASSELL, and so in a way his passing marks the end of the opening chapter of our practice.

Henry was instrumental in developing HASSELL as one of the leading modernist architectural practices in Australia following the boom in industrial development after the Second World War.

Henry’s major clients included International Harvester, HJ Heinz, Brockhoff, Dulux/Balm Paints, Kodak, Massey Ferguson, Ansett Industries, and ANZ which remains a HASSELL client to this day.

One of the many highlights of Henry’s career was winning the Royal Australian Institute of Architects’ Architecture Medal in 1965 for the Channel 0 Television Studios in Melbourne.

The last project he worked on for HASSELL was to oversee the delivery of the retail component of Melbourne Central, an iconic retail development for the city.

“There is no doubt that Henry was a key player in the post-war period that has contributed to Melbourne’s architectural legacy,” said former HASSELL Managing Director, Tim Shannon.

‘His approach to design started with a search for efficiency and finished with fastidious attention to the details of construction.

“It is fitting that his last project, the great conical structure of steel and glass that sits above the Melbourne Central Shot Tower, on which he worked in association with Kisho Kurokawa’s office, is a perfect example of his architectural commitment.”

It is with immense respect that we remember Henry Hayward and his contribution to HASSELL and Australian modernist architecture more broadly.

Our deepest sympathies are with Henry’s family.


Project images:

_Channel 0 Television Studios, Melbourne, Australia
_International Harvester, Dandenong, Australia
_Heinz, Dandenong, Australia

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Tuesday 18 August 2015
Workplace futures: design leaders tell us what it’s going to be about

When it comes to workplace design it’s what’s on the inside that counts, where work practices and workplace strategy are redefining and shaping commercial buildings, HASSELL Managing Director Robert Backhouse says.

This theme is one of many to be explored at the Work Place / Work Life conference in Sydney today. Rob joins leading workplace design practitioners from across Australasia to discuss issues facing workplace design and to talk about what the future holds.

Clive Wilkinson, president and design director, Clive Wilkinson Architects, kicks off the day with his key note speech, 'The theatre of work’. Looking to examples from his extensive portfolio including Google and JWT, Clive discusses the forces that have shaped the modern workplace.

Following Clive’s presentation, Rob chairs a panel discussion on how workplace architecture is transforming, using Medibank Place as a launch pad.

“Rather than commercial buildings being designed as a blank shell with no connection to their interior environment, we’re seeing ‘the work’ driving design from the inside out,” Rob says. 

“For instance, at Medibank Place in Melbourne, their vision to be a leading health insurer was pivotal in creating a health-based design outcome.” 

Rob, who has designed and delivered some of the world’s leading workplaces including Medibank, ANZ, BHP Billiton, and Westpac, is joined by panellists Clive Wilkinson and Philip Vivian (director, Bates Smart). 

“In working with leading workplaces we see people connect and collaborate more when they are guided through vertical interaction such as open, transparent environments,” Rob says.  

“This connection is also seen in the public realm, where commercial spaces overlap with the public domain, blurring boundaries.”  

The conference hosted by Architecture Media includes other keynote addresses by Jan Owen, CEO, Foundation for Young Australians, and Colin Seah, founder and director of design, Ministry of Design (Singapore). 

Find out more about the Work Place / Work Life conference

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Monday 10 August 2015
Caroline Diesner moves to Singapore

Principal and HASSELL board member Caroline Diesner has moved from our studio in Perth, Australia, to Singapore. 

An architect with over 20 years’ practice, Caroline has worked with an impressive list of clients and will bring her vast experience delivering integrated, high-performance workplaces to the region. Caroline has been involved in a lead position in the architecture and interior design for some of the region’s most prominent workplaces, with a portfolio of major projects including the BHP Billiton headquarters and one40william Street, as well as the Westpac Head Office, in Sydney. Caroline is particularly interested in how the physical environment can help shape and support workplace culture and performance. 

“Caroline’s move is part of our ongoing focus on Singapore as a hub to deliver projects internationally and it’s part of our wider international strategy,” said Rob Backhouse, HASSELL Managing Director.  

“I’m joining a great team in Singapore that’s already well established in the region and recognised for undertaking and delivering collaborative design projects, utilising a range of design skills and capabilities for both local and international clients,” says Caroline. 

The studio has a strong background in delivering master planning, urban regeneration and transport infrastructure projects in Singapore and is currently delivering the Thomson East Coast Line rail project for the Singapore Land Transport Authority. It has been publicly credited with unlocking economic and social value through its design of a uniquely challenging large-scale integrated 4-in-1 rail and bus depot. 

The team has also worked with Credit Suisse, Google, the Economic Development Board and the Ministry of National Development to create some of the most innovative workplaces in Singapore.  

“With so many international organisations now turning their attention to South East Asia, it’s an exciting time to work with innovative clients in the region seeking great design by talented designers, with tangible value delivered through a rigorous design process,” says Caroline.

Friday 31 July 2015
Introducing Jon Hazelwood: HASSELL Principal

On the face of it a pop-up playground in Sydney, a one-kilometre long shopping mall in Seoul and a High Street in decline in Croydon, London don’t have much in common.

But over the past few months these places have all been reimagined by teams of HASSELL designers including Jon Hazelwood, who became a Principal at HASSELL this month.

Jon has spent the past 18 years practicing as a Landscape Architect, in the UK and Australia and is known for his fresh, collaborative and energetic approach.

“I really enjoy bringing the right expertise and talent together for the best project outcome, no matter what discipline or design background someone may have, or where they are located,” Jon says.

“Last month I had a great experience working on the Seunsangga Citywalk competition in Korea with team members in London, Sydney, Melbourne and Shanghai,” explains Jon.

Jon says he draws inspiration from interesting and inspirational collaborators.

“Getting the view point from collaborators as disparate as a brand expert, a story teller or a horticulturalist, all make for a vastly better project.”

Last month he was part of the team working with Archikidz to create PLAY[ground]. The pop-up play space saw 4,000 children running, climbing and giggling their way through the installation as part of the annual Vivid Sydney event.

Originally from Newcastle in the north of England, Jon recently returned to Sydney, following 4 years in the HASSELL London Studio. Here he worked with the team, Croydon Council and external collaborators to help reverse the fortunes of Croydon South End High Street.

“The 2011 London riots were a catalyst for an extensive High Street improvement program across London. We worked in partnership with Council, the local community and likeminded collaborators to promote increased use of the high street through creating an environment more conducive to strolling, shopping and 'grazing' the restaurants,” explains Jon.

Jon says one of the biggest challenges his clients are tackling is to find new and successful ways to draw people to their site, encourage them to stay and tell their friends about their experience.

“Terms like 'activation' and 'meanwhile use' are becoming somewhat clichéd, but the fact they’re so ubiquitous goes to show the interest clients have in achieving the sort of buzz that makes a successful place.” explains Jon.

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Monday 27 July 2015
HASSELL to take over London shop front of global fashion brand

Global fashion brand Karen Millen has chosen HASSELL to take over its shop front as part of this year’s Royal Institute of British Architects Windows. The event sees design studios creating bespoke shop fronts on London's Regent Street.

The competition will see 15 design practices transform the streetscape of one of London’s most historic streets into an interactive exhibition celebrating the innovation and creativity of London’s architectural talent.

HASSELL has an award-winning portfolio of short-term installations and pop-up interventions around the globe and Karen Millen was drawn to the intricacy but also the simplicity inherent to many of the designs.

“Through their inspirational use of craft and form…we got a sense of how HASSELL works with differing spaces, and how partnering with them could really transform our windows for the RIBA festival period,” said Karen Millen’s Global Creative Director, Katie Vale. 

The HASSELL installation concept will draw on Karen Millen’s international reputation as creators of beautifully crafted fashion for confident women.

A swirling mass of printed fabric will create a magical wonderland across the entire 30 metres of their shop windows. The HASSELL design celebrates the brand’s femininity and the very craftsmanship that lies at the heart of the fashion industry.

“This project represents a unique opportunity for HASSELL to engage with other disciplines within the creative industries and celebrate the craft which is at the heart of both the fashion and architecture worlds,” said HASSELL Principal, Julian Gitsham.

The designs will be installed and unveiled on 7 September 2015 and will remain in place for three weeks. 

Read more on the RIBA Windows Competition here

Tuesday 21 July 2015
HASSELL and Distillery merge

International design practice, HASSELL, and talented and respected Singapore-based design studio, Distillery, would like to announce that they have merged.

Distillery is a design studio known for its exceptional portfolio of hospitality, retail, food and beverage and residential design. Recent work includes the newly completed Club Hotel, work with Alila Hotels and Resorts on projects in Malaysia, the luxury Singapore emporium Malmaison, and the Manhattan Bar at the Singapore Regent Hotel.

“The merger has brought together really like-minded design teams,” said Paul Semple, Distillery Principal. “Our two practices share common values and the integration of the teams has been a natural evolution.”

“Distillery's way of working and ethos will now continue under the HASSELL name – so it’s a genuine coming together signified in both name and joint sense of purpose,” said Paul.

HASSELL Managing Director, Robert Backhouse, said Distillery partners Paul Semple and Matthew Shang and their team would bring fresh perspectives and highly creative approaches to the HASSELL studio.

“Our clients both in Singapore and internationally will benefit from the collective design talent, knowledge and resource base of the two practices,” said Rob. “Collaboration, openness and a desire to create places people love are part of the DNA for both practices,” he said.

This is the latest of a number of decisions HASSELL has made to strengthen its commitment to Singapore as a hub for its international practice. It follows the appointment of Su Lim to the new role of global Head of Client Engagement based in Singapore and the relocation of Principal and Board member, Caroline Diesner, from Perth to Singapore later this month.

Manhattan Bar
More Passion by the Hour Glass
South Coast Bar and Bistro
Manhattan Bar

Monday 6 July 2015
Highest honour at AIA

The Fiona Stanley Hospital Design Collaboration (comprising HASSELL, Hames Sharley and Silver Thomas Hanley) has taken out three prestigious awards at the Australian Institute of Architects WA chapter awards.
The Fiona Stanley Hospital, received the state’s highest honour, the George Temple Poole Award. 

The jury said the landmark project achieved “a high standard of design, integrating architecture and landscape architecture.”

“The Fiona Stanley Hospital was an ambitious State project and has demonstrated a high level of achievement,” said the Jury. 

The hospital was also recognised in the Public and Sustainable Architecture categories, receiving the Jeffrey Howlett Award and Wallace Greenham Award respectively.

“The hospital has been designed as a naturally healing environment, responsive to complex functional needs but with a focus on the human considerations of scale, natural light, texture and environment,” said HASSELL Principal David Gulland.

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Monday 6 July 2015
Shoalhaven Cancer Care Centre wins at AIA

The Shoalhaven Cancer Care Centre has won the coveted Premiers Award at the Australian Institute of Architects New South Wales chapter awards.

The award is selected by the NSW Government Architect from all entries that have been shortlisted.

The $35 million centre is a comprehensive cancer treatment facility that establishes a new model of care for the treatment of cancer patients.

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Monday 29 June 2015
Award-winning weekend

It's been an award-winning weekend for HASSELL with a number of projects awarded top place at the Australian Institute of Architects state chapter awards.

The University of Queensland’s Global Change Institute in Brisbane won three Queensland state awards – the Harry Marks Award for Sustainable Architecture, GHM Addison Award for Interior Architecture and the RG Suter Award for Educational Architecture.

A $32 million building, the Global Change Institute meets the world's most advanced levels of sustainability. The building is a test-bed for innovative sustainable building solutions and works with the natural environment to operate as a zero-energy and carbon neutral workplace.

The University of the Sunshine Coast Collaborative Futures Project also won two Queensland state awards - State Commendation for Sustainable Architecture and a State Award for Educational Architecture.

Medibank Place, the new headquarters for Australian healthcare insurer Medibank in Melbourne, won an Australian Institute of Architects (Victoria) Award – Architecture Award for Interior Architecture.

The University of Queensland Global Change Institute
Medibank Place
The University of the Sunshine Coast Collaborative Futures Project 

Tuesday 16 June 2015
Oliver Kampshoff joins HASSELL

Oliver Kampshoff is an architect who has worked on numerous high profile projects in the UK, including Broadcasting Place in Leeds, the Condé Nast College of Fashion and Design in London, the Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre near Manchester and the Rebecca Horn retrospective at the Hayward Gallery on London’s Southbank.

We are very pleased to be welcoming Oliver to HASSELL as a Principal this week. He will be based in our London studio but working on projects for our practice globally.

Oliver studied in Stuttgart and Zurich and moved to London in 2003. He first joined Claudio Silvestrin architects and then moved to Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios (FCBS) in 2005, where he became a Partner and remained until joining HASSELL. He is a member of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) and is registered in the UK and Germany.

“Oliver is known in the market for managing and delivering outstanding projects for clients in both the private and public sectors, projects which are often very complex in nature,” said Rob Backhouse, HASSELL Managing Director.

“He is joining HASSELL at a time when our European presence is rapidly expanding, with many exciting projects in the pipeline. We look forward to Oliver’s design excellence and expertise which will strengthen our leadership team across HASSELL and especially our team within the UK region,” said Rob.

“I am very excited to be joining HASSELL,” said Oliver about his move.

“It’s a fantastic time to come in to this dynamic and growing international practice and support its ambition to deliver outstanding design in the UK and beyond. I am looking forward to working with the expanding team, clients and collaborators and to building new relationships that will allow us to embark on exciting ventures,” said Oliver.

Oliver can be contacted at or +44 207 490 7669.

Tuesday 9 June 2015
Laughs, giggles, shouts and smiles – making our cities more playable

How can our cities become more playable and fun? And why is that important? These were the central questions at two events HASSELL was involved in over the weekend and is a topic that’s gaining momentum around the world.

Archikidz in partnership with Sydney Living Museums for Vivid 2015 Sydney Living Museums transformed the Hyde Park Barracks for three days into PLAY[ground], an immersive play space for kids. Archikidz is an organisation that inspires tomorrow's thinkers and city-makers and educates children about the built environment.

PLAY[ground] was designed by HASSELL in collaboration with a diverse and dynamic team of creatives, who have a shared passion for making our cities more equitable and sustainable for future generations. 

In addition to introducing an exciting play experience into the heart of Sydney’s CBD, PLAY[ground] asked kids about the sort of city they want to live in in the future. The space was visited by over 6,000 people during the three days and included elements that were unpredictable, whimsical and spontaneous. Children – and the young at heart – were encouraged to explore and experiment with their surroundings. Many of the materials used to construct the space were scavenged and reused – including old parachutes and boat sails

Jon Hazelwood, HASSELL Principal, said ‘playability’ is an important consideration for our urban environments as it brings life into our city spaces, and encourages people to linger, explore and most importantly, smile.

“Play brings joy, it helps people feel connected, included and excited by the cities they live in,” said Jon.

“The projects undertaken by Archikidz are important because they allow the next generations to present fresh perspectives on how we can make our cities better for everyone who lives there – young and old.”

Play also sparked ideas and ignited conversations in China on Saturday at Designing Shanghai, with tech-based organisation Techyizu leading discussions and workshops on how play can contribute to a more connected and inviting urban environment.

In his presentation, HASSELL Principal Richard Mullane talked about play as urban intervention, exploring the importance of play in urban environments to create fun and memorable experiences.

“In rapidly developing cities such as Shanghai, the prioritisation of economic growth can sometimes come at the expense of interpersonal connection,” said Richard.

“However, low cost, playful interventions are just one way communities can start reclaiming public spaces. They have been proven to make urban environments more people-centric and accessible – they inject humanity back into the city.”

To learn more about these events and initiatives please visit:
Archikidz PLAY[ground]
Designing Shanghai

Monday 18 May 2015
New Principals at HASSELL

There are six new Principals at HASSELL – all internal promotions of people who have shown great design leadership and delivered exceptional value for clients. The new Principals are:

_Tony Dickens – Interior Design
_Jon Hazelwood – Landscape Architecture
_Richard Mullane – Urban Design
_Lucy O’Driscoll – Architecture
_David Tickle – Urban Design
_Harley Vincent – Architecture

The promotions reflect the strength of design talent at HASSELL and are an investment in the future of HASSELL for the benefit of our clients.

“We’re continually looking to support and advance our talented design team,” says Managing Director Rob Backhouse.

“The new Principals have all demonstrated their design credentials at HASSELL. Just as importantly, they have worked with clients to achieve their objectives and deliver enhanced value, often well beyond our clients’ expectations.

"That ability to unlock the potential of a place through a collaborative and innovative approach to design, driven by the HASSELL design process, is one of the most important characteristics of a HASSELL Principal,” says Rob.  

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Monday 18 May 2015
A dreamy design festival installation

How many hours of sleep did you get last night? Did you check your phone messages during the night, or log on to your email while you were in bed? Mobile technology has blurred the lines between work and home life and, for some of us, it’s affecting our sleep. 

As part of this year’s Clerkenwell Design Festival held in London, HASSELL has created an immersive installation called Hypnos: The Architecture of Sleep. Hypnos whimsically explores the creation of environments that respond to our ever-increasing resistance to conventional patterns of rest and sleep. And through artistic expression, it questions whether ‘sleeping parlours’ might become a real part of our future cityscape. 

A collaboration between HASSELL, Sto Werkstatt and Draisci Studio, the installation comprises felt hammocks, or sleeping pods, suspended from timber frames. Inside the hammocks, visitors will be cloistered from the hectic commotion of daily life and London’s busy streets, immersed in the pleasures of inactivity.Whispered stories, dimmed lights, soft textures and soothing colours are used within the installation to ease visitors into a state of true withdrawal. 

Hypnos will be open to visitors during Clerkenwell Design Week, one of the most important creative events on the UK festival calendar. Hypnos kicks off with a preview party on 19 May, and will then continue into the London Festival of Architecture until 30 June.  

To coincide with the installation, HASSELL is organising a series of events to further explore some of the issues we are raising. Events include lunchtime yoga sessions and a roundtable discussion with a panel of leading sleep scientists and designers.

HASSELL will also be involved in creating a second installation for the London Graphic Centre. Entitled Scaled-D, this installation will add a colourful creation to the Centre’s window front.

You can come down and check out the setting up of Scaled-D on Monday 18 May from 10am, or stop by at any time during the remainder of design week to see what it looks like when completed. 

Check out this short teaser film about Hynos: The Architecture of Sleep.

Event details:

Hypnos: The Architecture of Sleep is open for viewing at Sto Werkstatt, 7-9 Woodbridge St, London EC1R 0EX.

During Clerkenwell Design Week, you can view it on 19-21 May 2015 from 10am to 7pm, Tuesday until Thursday, or by appointment.

The installation will remain open until the end of London Festival of Architecture, closing 30 June 2015. 

Visit Scaled-D at the London Graphic Centre, 86 Goswell Road, London, EC1V 7DB, between 19-21 May. 


For more information visit:

Monday 11 May 2015
Cracking the capacity code

Today, developers, employers and designers are all working to maximise the value of each workplace we create. New research by HASSELL and Arup has found that by thinking about a building’s capacity in terms such as ‘number of people per square metre’ – the norm for most building codes ­– we could be limiting a site’s potential from the outset. 

While work environments have changed dramatically during the past 25 years, some Australian building codes and certifications have not kept up with these changes. The way building codes calculate the number of people that can fit in a building has not changed since the early 1990s. Meanwhile, working environments have been transforming through the introduction of new technology and through evolving approaches to hierarchical structures.

Our research paper, Designers Thinking: Seven new ways to add value to flexible workplaces, being presented today at the agIdeas Design for Business Research Conference, seeks to find a more flexible approach to capacity calculations, one that’s more aligned with today’s more flexible workplaces.

The research team for this project was a collaboration between HASSELL Senior Researcher Dr Agustin Chevez, HASSELL Principal Steve Coster and Arup’s Cameron McIntosh and Paul Sloman.

Dr Agustin Chevez said that calculating capacity in a modern working environment can be a complex task. “While we can design and build cutting edge and technologically innovative buildings, such as the Global Change Institute at the University of Queensland, simply understanding the capacity of working environments is not straightforward,” said Agustin. “We’ve moved out of cubicles and into fluid working environments. And there seems to be room for innovation in how we calculate and nominate the number of people comfortably and safely occupying a contemporary office building,” Agustin added.

The research team believes designers can struggle with this issue is because we may start our thinking at the wrong end of the problem – fitting the building around the codes. The team adopted Design Thinking as a way to innovate building capacity frameworks.

The findings show that new working practices – such as Activity-Based and Free-Range working – have the tendency to increase the number of people per square metre in office buildings. But at the same time, current frameworks nominating workplace densities are falling behind and limiting the potential of contemporary work environments.

Innovation may not come from proposing denser densities – it may come from rethinking the way building capacity is calculated and managed. “Innovation in building capacity frameworks will unlock new forms of value in workplace design,” Agustin said.

View the agIdeas Design for Business: Research Conference details here.

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Friday 24 April 2015
How can hospital workplace design help attract and retain nurses?

Hospitals the world over have trouble keeping nurses. HASSELL and The University of Melbourne are working together on a research project to see if hospital workplace design can lift nurse numbers in Australia and the United Kingdom.

The research will identify physical elements in the hospital environment that affect the attraction and retention of nursing staff. It will also explore what hospital workplace designs are appropriate to help achieve these outcomes, with a view that attracting the best talent to an organisation will lead to increased productivity and performance, and a happier, more engaged workforce.

The research will build on previous research from HASSELL relating to staff attraction and retention in the commercial sector. It will also expand on existing studies about the effects of hospital design on nursing staff, including work done by Professor James Buchan, Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh and The University of Melbourne, who is a global advisor for this research project.

The Chief Investigator on the project is Dr. Lucio Naccarella, a Senior Research Fellow from the University of Melbourne School of Population and Global Health. He said the project would have “broader policy, practice and research implications for hospital nursing leaders, management and staff.”

Megan Reading, HASSELL Principal and a former nurse, is also involved in the study. She believes “the research will bring the health design community a better understanding of the constraints that affect the daily working lives of nurses. It will highlight evidence based opportunities for better hospital workplace design.”.

Several hospitals in Australia and the United Kingdom will be involved in the study, which will include consultation with key stakeholders and a survey of nurses to identify areas of concern. HASSEL will then undertake a design exercise to explore potential responses to the issues raised.

The research is made possible by a Research Connections Grant from the Australian Government’s Department of Industry and Science. The final project report will be released at the end of this year.


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Tuesday 21 April 2015
A true partner in the HASSELL journey

Tony McCormick, one of the pioneers of Landscape Architecture at HASSELL, has retired after 36 years with the practice. Tony leaves behind a legacy of major projects, mainly in Sydney, Adelaide, Perth and Shanghai.

Managing Director Rob Backhouse said: “Tony was involved in a series of projects that established an approach to landscape architecture that set HASSELL apart. Our deep understanding of land systems and their importance to sustainability is an important legacy of Tony’s contributions at HASSELL.”

The long list of major works Tony has designed includes the Southern Oceans and Asian Elephant exhibits at Sydney’s Taronga Park Zoo, the waterside parks at Sydney’s Little Manly Point, Yarra Bay and Mort Bay and the ground-breaking NSW Better Drainage Guidelines. These guidelines were the basis for the water sensitive urban design principles are now mandatory for all Australian developments.

One of Tony’s greatest achievements is the remarkable Millennium Parklands, a 450 ha urban parkland constructed for the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games. This beautiful and sustainable urban park, designed in partnership with Peter Walker and Partners and Bruce Mackenzie Design, transformed one of Sydney’s most contaminated and degraded sites into one of the greatest legacies of Sydney’s “Green Games”.

Tony says he found working at HASSELL easy, because his values were aligned with the practice’s values.

“HASSELL creates spaces and places that are in harmony with, and bring benefits to, their surroundings and users – they have a positive effect,” said Tony.

“HASSELL designers achieve this by, as  fundamental first steps, knowing the site, understanding the client’s and users’ requirements, then making sure they are clear about the experiences they wish to give people in these places. Then they work hard to design special places to deliver these experiences. Our designers have to think things through, starting from the moment a person enters a site and getting right down to the fine details, to the elements that, upon discovery, bring delight and wonder.”

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Tuesday 14 April 2015
Is bigger always better for health precincts?

The benefits of greater cross-disciplinary collaboration and co-location in large health and research precincts are well-documented but without careful planning – particularly of the spaces between buildings – there can be side effects according to a recently released report called Walk, Talk, Work.

The report, based on a recent study tour of the USA, UK, Europe and Australia by HASSELL Researcher Michaela Sheahan, found that some of the world’s largest health and research precincts aren’t achieving expected levels of collaboration.

“I was anticipating that more co-location of institutions would lead to greater collaboration. But as it turns out, bigger is not necessarily better, especially when it comes to promoting collaboration between people working in neighbouring buildings as opposed to within each building,” says Michaela.

“Other issues that need to be carefully considered for large-scale precincts include the way the public spaces around the building are programmed for activities and designed to encourage people visiting and working in the precinct and its surrounding neighbourhoods to make better use of them.

“If everybody’s inside the buildings with no reason to go out, the public spaces in between the buildings are weakened, and the whole precinct suffers from a lack of activity.”

Michaela’s research is particularly relevant as governments seek to anchor the development of cities in knowledge and innovation. They are increasingly turning to the co-location of health and research institutions in tertiary hospital precincts to deliver economic dividends.

Some of the health precincts in Michaela’s case studies struggled to support more than a handful of restaurants and retail businesses despite being located in areas frequented daily by enough people to populate a small city. The loss of small-scale street level business makes it harder to achieve the goals of de-institutionalisation and mixed-use activity.

“What I learned was that precinct size is no indicator of success on those goals in particular. Clustering of facilities needs to be accompanied by a vibrant public realm to enable interaction and activity on site, as well as connection to the surrounding community,” Michaela concludes.

“Thoughtful urban planning that encourages diverse activity within a precinct is the key to providing great public spaces for healthcare professionals to walk, talk, think and work.”

Michaela’s research was made possible by National Association of Women in Construction 2014 International Women’s Day scholarship sponsored by Cult Design.

View the full report, Walk, Talk, Work, including detailed case studies of the eight health precincts.

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Tuesday 7 April 2015
HASSELL Fellow to head his profession

HASSELL Fellow Ken Maher is a powerful advocate for the importance of design. That will be the focus of his new role as first President Elect and then President of the Australian Institute of Architects (AIA).

“The institute is an advocate for the critical role that architects have to play in the future of our cities and our communities,” he says.

“Our focus as architects is on the way we live, work and play, the way people respond to the urban environment. That has to be at the forefront of our investment in buildings, infrastructure and public places to ensure the sustainability and liveability of our cities and towns. My interests in this leadership role will be to work with my colleagues in demonstrating the role of architecture and design as a social force in enriching our daily lives. I would like to thank the institute and all its members for the opportunity to do that.”

The AIA is the peak body for the architectural profession in Australia, representing 12,000 members. Ken will become its national President Elect in May this year working closely with 2015 President Jon Clements, and then President for 12 months from May 2016.

Ken has been a design leader at HASSELL for over two decades. A former Chairman and Principal, his role as the inaugural HASSELL Fellow allows him to focus on key projects such as the renewal of Sydney’s Darling Harbour as well as taking on important appointments outside the practice including as Professor of Practice at UNSW. Earlier this year, Ken was appointed President of the Australian Sustainable Built Environment Council (ASBEC) and joined the Board of UrbanGrowth NSW.

Image source: Business Events Sydney 

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Tuesday 31 March 2015
Need a caffeine fix? It's academic

HASSELL has made its presence known at the UK Association of University Directors of Estates (AUDE) conference by serving up beautifully crafted coffee – and an equally beautiful display stand.

Designed by the HASSELL team in the UK, the stand features a timber coffee servery, a striking, illuminated installation made of 750 biodegradable coffee cups spelling out the word ‘HASSELL’. Also on show, projected on the stand’s semi-transparent walls, are images from our leading international portfolio of education and research design.

All UK universities are members of AUDE, an organisation dedicated to excellence in the strategic planning, management, operation and development of UK higher education and research facilities.

Julian Gitsham, HASSELL Principal and Practice Leader for Architecture in the UK, said of the HASSELL presence at this event: “We’ve all been to so many of these conferences where stand after stand offers the same content in the same format. We asked ourselves how we could provide a truly different experience while at the same time communicating something about our design processes and thinking. And it’s worked!

“We’ve been having fantastic conversations with some of the key players in the sector over some seriously good coffee, perched at a beautifully made wooden bar. I could definitely think of worse places to be!”

HASSELL Principal Mark Roehrs, also at the event, said, “HASSELL has significant experience in designing for the specific needs of education and research facilities. The AUDE conference is an opportunity for us to meet with some of the key decision-makers and leading thinkers in the education and science sector in the UK. It’s also a chance to advance our understanding of the industry’s future trends and challenges.”

See examples of our Education and Science experience.

AUDE conference HASSELL stand - news image
Friday 27 March 2015
Green buildings: Getting more to give more

Business leaders are too conservative when it comes to investing in healthy buildings and workplaces. It’s an attitude that the building industry must do more to change, said leading green design architect and researcher Professor Vivian Loftness.

Visiting Melbourne from Carnegie Mellon University in the United States, Professor Loftness emphasised the positive effects of high performance, green buildings and said that the conversation with business decision makers needed to change to better promote these health and productivity impacts.

“It’s not always better to have spent less on a building,” said Professor Loftness, who outlined the power of implementing a triple bottom line that placed equal value on the financial, environmental and human benefits of good design choices.

“Using the triple bottom line calculation, it’s the third bottom line – people – that might just be the one to tip decision makers over the line to invest in better buildings. They need to see the true value of low carbon, high performance buildings.”

Professor Loftness was speaking at the HASSELL Melbourne studio at a Green Cities 2015 Conference debriefing workshop. The event was hosted by HASSELL in partnership with Brookfield Multiplex and AECOM, the key industry partners of the CRC for Low Carbon Living’s Closing the Loop Project.

The Closing the Loop Project aims to educate business on the various elements that make up a high performance building.

As well as presenting at Green Cities 2015, Professor Loftness toured Medibank’s new head office in Melbourne’s Docklands, designed by HASSELL to be one of the healthiest workplace in the world.

“The Medibank building is an excellent example of business leaders seeing the value of spending more to get more from their building to give more to their employees,” she said.

In pulling together the research and evidence of academics and industry experts like Professor Loftness, the Closing the Loop Project can provide clear evidence-based strategies for the next generation of workplaces, schools and hospitals, said Brett Pollard, Head of Knowledge and Sustainability at HASSELL.

“The Closing the Loop project will continue to work with academic experts like Professor Loftness to increase the public promotion of high performance buildings to have a positive long-term impact on the health and wellbeing of the people who inhabit our buildings, towns and cities,” said Brett.

Vivian Loftness
Friday 27 March 2015
2015 HASSELL Travelling Scholarship rewards innovation

Going where few landscape architects have gone before has landed Christie Stewart from the University of Western Australia the HASSELL Travelling Scholarship – Robin Edmond Award.

The landscape architecture student threw out the rule book and adapted emerging methodologies and technologies not typically used in her profession to address the sustainability challenges facing broadacre farmers in Western Australia’s wheat belt. The prize gives her the opportunity to travel and immerse herself in places significant to furthering her studies.

Christie knows first-hand that for farmers the health of the land is both their livelihood and identity. Using her family’s farm in the Wongan-Ballidu Shire as a test case, Christie aimed to secure long-term farming viability by modifying farming practices and restoring natural processes to increase yield while improving the health and resilience of the land.

Her landscape strategy combined GIS (geographic information systems) mapping, precision agriculture methodology and an iterative design approach to address the sources of degradation in the farm and the regional landscape.

HASSELL Head of Landscape Architecture, Angus Bruce said: “Christie’s connections to the land came across strongly in her research, which stood out for so boldly and passionately tackling a challenge of huge importance.

“We were also impressed by the innovative way Christie integrated techniques that aren’t generally used by landscape architects to get the best outcomes for her project.”

Christie is excited about the prospect of travelling to expand upon her awarded research project, Ameliorating Agriculture: Cultivating Biodiversity.

“Thanks to the HASSELL Travelling Scholarship I’ll be able visit Precision Agriculture in Queensland and get a first-hand understanding of the breadth and application of the agricultural technology available,” she said.

“I’m also hoping to visit other agricultural properties that are successfully sustaining natural biodiversity to see how owners manage to heal their land and remain viable.”

The HASSELL Travelling Scholarship – Robin Edmond Award is an annual award that recognises graduating landscape architecture students who show outstanding potential for future contribution to the profession. HASSELL thanks the students and universities that participated in the 2014/15 scholarship program. The overall quality of submissions was exceptional – a sign of the many talented new designers entering the landscape architecture profession.

Download the project abstract.

Photography by Paul Verity

Christie Stewart - 2015 Travelling Scholarship_news
Thursday 26 March 2015
Students given the entrepreneurial edge

Students at Flinders University, South Australia are being encouraged to ‘think like an entrepreneur’ with the opening of its $120 million state-of-the-art teaching and research facility designed by HASSELL.

The six-storey 16,000 square metre Flinders at Tonsley building unites education, innovation, business and commercial start-up ventures in one precinct, giving students firsthand experience of industry and helping stimulate economic growth in the region.

Speaking at the official opening of Flinders at Tonsley, the University’s vice-chancellor Professor Colin Stirling said the new development brought together the sharpest minds, boldest researchers and proven business leaders under one roof to spark innovation and drive new business opportunities.

Flinders at Tonsley collocates the University’s School of Computer Science, Engineering and Mathematics, with the Flinders Medical Device Research Institute and Centre for NanoScale Science and Technology. It is also a hub for entrepreneurs and next-generation start-ups through the New Venture Institute (NVI), which runs programs, mentors and helps the next generation of ideas to become reality.

HASSELL Principal Chris Watkins said the integration of teaching, learning, research and social spaces was critical to fostering the collaborative environment sought by the university.

“Flinders University is forging connections between academia research and industry entrepreneurship,” said Chris.

“Teaching and learning doesn’t just happen in the classroom, research doesn’t just happen in the laboratory or at one’s desk, discussions don’t just happen in meeting rooms, and “work” doesn’t just happen in an office.

“The design responds to this by providing a simple, flexible structure that promotes interaction, connection and exchange between all its occupants – students, teaching staff, researchers and private industry – to encourage sharing of ideas, cross-discipline innovation and create new business and economic opportunities.”

Flinders at Tonsley news image
Friday 13 March 2015
Perth Stadium station design revealed

The next stage of the new Perth Stadium and Sports Precinct in Western Australia has begun with the HASSELL designed train station revealed to public.

The Stadium Station design complements the Perth Stadium and Sports Precinct, also designed by HASSELL in collaboration with Cox Architecture and HKS Sport + Entertainment.

The Western Australian Transport Minister Dean Nalder described the Stadium Station as a modern and vibrant piece of infrastructure.

“The new station will allow for a train to leave the station every few minutes after a capacity-event crowd and will feature three island platforms with six platform faces for passenger loading,” he said.

“Aesthetically, the colour will complement the design of the new Perth Stadium, which has a striking bronze coloured façade. A wide roof reaches out from the enclosed concourse to protect passengers from the weather. Public art will also be incorporated into the final design.”

HASSELL Associate John-Paul Davies said the station was designed to give people using it the best possible experience.

“When designing the station we considered the part it plays in the overall ‘event’ experience. We worked closely with the Public Transport Authority to ensure the operational planning will maximise ease of use for patrons,” John-Paul said.

“The internal experience was designed to be enjoyable for users, with a bronzed interior skin creating an inviting atmosphere and a visually interesting texture.”

The design for the area surrounding the stadium is inspired by the cultural stories of Indigenous Australians and the bronze design component reflects the unique geology of Western Australia. It will have three distinct recreational spaces encouraging use by the community all year round. 

Construction of the sporting and recreation precinct surrounding the stadium will be completed in April 2018 in time for the start of that year’s Australian Football League season.

Perth Stadium station_News Image
Thursday 12 March 2015
South West Rail Link opens to public and government applause

The South West Rail Link in Sydney, Australia has opened to an enthusiastic travelling public. The 13.2 kilometre rail line supports the development of sustainable communities in one of Sydney’s major growth centres.

HASSELL developed the reference and concept design for the link which will address congestion and meet the evolving needs of commuters.

As part of the South West Rail Link project, HASSELL also designed two new stations, Edmondson Park and Leppington.  

Both stations are the focus of the local town centre, with the rail line placed in a cutting so it does not physically divide the centre.

At the opening of the rail link at Leppington Station, NSW Minister for Transport, Gladys Berejiklian said: “I challenge anyone to look around the world at the best railway stations and [Leppington Station] is up there with them.”

The HASSELL contribution to the project included the preparation of tender documents, stakeholder liaison and advisory services during the tender phase.

HASSELL also advised on the development of the Design and Construction contract that was awarded to John Holland.

Ross de la Motte, HASSELL Principal and Urban Transport Sector Leader, was delighted with the outcome and how the HASSELL vision had been brought to life.

“The development of transport infrastructure is essential to ensure a city remains liveable into the future and makes moving across it easy. This project has provided Sydney’s south-west greater access to amenity and a reliable transport service,” he said. 

South West Rail Link_News Image_01
Wednesday 4 March 2015
Medibank’s new workplace on show at Worktech

Medibank is in the business of promoting better health for everyone. This includes the people who come to work every day at Medibank Place, its new head office in Melbourne’s Docklands.

The design of the new workplace was part of a major cultural change program that transformed Medibank from a traditional health insurance business to a healthcare provider focused on preventative health and wellbeing.

Medibank’s Executive General Manager, People and Culture, Kylie Bishop, is helping lead the business in its transformation. Kylie spoke at the Worktech conference today in Melbourne about how the HASSELL design concept for the site, building and workplace supports Medibank’s aspiration to create one of the healthiest workplaces in the world.

Medibank wanted a workplace that would be light years ahead of the more traditional office buildings it was moving from in encouraging movement, flexibility, freedom of choice, creativity, interaction and engagement.

Activity based working with health at its heart

The result is an evolution of Activity Based Working (ABW) that places the mental and physical health of people at its heart – and a building that Medibank’s David Goldsworthy, Program Director – Thrive, has described as being ‘hard-wired for health’. Medibank employees have real freedom to choose how and where they work. With laptops and mobile phones in hand, they can select from more than 26 types of work settings, ranging from indoor quiet spaces and collaborative hubs to wifi-enabled balconies and the building’s public park. This is not just empowering for staff, it also encourages people to move around during the work day which is a critical part of staying healthy.

Making the stairs the easiest way to travel between floors and including work settings where people can stand rather than sit are among other design decisions that promote this vital incidental physical activity. Employees who want a more vigorous workout during the day can also make use of a multipurpose sports court at ground level. Adjacent to the sports court, an edible garden sits near a demonstration kitchen that Medibank uses to promote healthy eating to both staff, not-for-profit organisations and the wider community.

A living, breathing building transforms its surrounds

Both the building and the workplace incorporate an enormous number of plants – 2,300 inside the building and 520 on the facade as well as two 25-metre high street-facing green walls. Within the workplace this helps relieve stress, improve internal air quality and transform views from grey to green. Around 10 percent of the building’s exterior is covered by plants which also makes the ‘living, breathing building’ a welcome relief within its heavily concreted surrounds.

Diverse design collaborations create character and meaning

Achieving the kind of innovation Medibank wanted for its new workplace meant driving a highly collaborative design process, including inviting a spectrum of collaborators to work with us. For example, three very different design firms – Chris Connell Design, Kerry Phelan Design Office and Russell and George – collaborated with HASSELL on the plaza level which sits in the middle of the tower and is designed to create an inspiring destination within the building. The result is a rich and diverse plaza level that houses four distinctive ‘clubhouses’, each created by a different design team to inspire different responses and create layers of character and meaning in the workplace.

A symbol of what Medibank stands for

The new building is a strong symbol of Medibank’s unwavering commitment to its employees and ‘walking the talk’ on promoting better health. More broadly, it achieves Medibank’s aim of ‘giving something back’ to the community by creating an engaging public precinct with a timber amphitheatre, cafes and shops as well as the welcoming park at its base. Medibank is confident its new workplace will also deliver financial value through improved productivity and efficiency and will help inspire customer focused innovation by creating breathing space for ideas to grow.

As Kylie puts it, the building, workplace and surrounding public space “epitomises our purpose and values and all that we stand for.”

For media enquiries or requests for images of this project, please contact:
Mike Roberts
T + 61 3 8102 3144

Earl Carter: images 1, 3, 4, 5 and 6
Peter Bennetts: image 2

Wednesday 25 February 2015
HASSELL wins signature Sydney tower

HASSELL has won the international design competition for 60 Martin Place, one of the most significant development sites in Sydney, Australia.

The design reaffirms Martin Place as the civic and business heart of Sydney and maximises views of the Sydney Opera House, Botanic Gardens and the harbour, while respecting the neighbouring heritage listed St Stephen’s Uniting Church. 

The planned redevelopment by Investa Office and Gwynvill Group will appeal to the most progressive tenants, with the ability to commission flexible, interconnected workspace and roof gardens in what will become one of Sydney’s most sought-after business addresses.

“This is a site with a front row seat at the centre of Sydney’s skyline,” said Tony Grist, HASSELL Head of Design - Architecture and design team leader for the project. 

“The design respects the existing facades that lend Martin Place its character. At street level on Martin Place, the building will feature a low-scale podium, formed of Sydney sandstone blades with the tower rising behind it. The sandstone solidity and copper spire of St Stephen’s Uniting Church has been a strong influence on the form of the new tower.

“The building’s striking northern facade is a fluid, curved form. As the building rises, the curve pulls back from the spire, giving it ‘breathing space’, before curving out again. From street level, the image of the spire will be reflected and scattered in the façade,” he said.

The lower levels of the 32-storey development will allow movement between Martin Place and Macquarie Streets and provide public access to indoor and outdoor cafes, roof top bars and restaurants and an event space. These form a generous new civic ‘room’ visually connected over five levels, allowing people on upper levels to view and engage with events below.

The building will bring new life to the eastern end of Sydney’s pre-eminent civic space, reactivating it during and beyond usual business trading hours.

“The design will deliver a balance of social, cultural and economic value to Sydney and its people as well as to Investa Office and the Gwynvill Group,” Tony said. 

The international design competition, involving six design teams, followed an extensive pre-feasibility phase, led by HASSELL, which established the urban design and commercial parameters for the competition brief.

Featuring just over 40,000 square metres of lettable area, the building’s prominent corner location will provide up to three anchor tenants with the opportunity to each secure the most prestigious business addresses in Sydney, via Martin Place, Macquarie Street or Phillip Street. 

The existing 1970s building will be demolished to make way for the premium, environmentally sound office tower, designed to achieve 6 Star Green Star Office and a minimum 5 Star NABERS Energy ratings. Construction completion is anticipated in early 2019.

Images by Doug and Wolf / HASSELL

Wednesday 18 February 2015
HASSELL fellow shaping the fabric of Australian cities

With his appointment to the Board of UrbanGrowth NSW, HASSELL Fellow Professor Ken Maher is continuing his longstanding commitment to the shaping and improvement of Sydney’s urban fabric. UrbanGrowth NSW is the Australian state’s urban development agency, managing major urban renewal projects in Sydney and across NSW. This news follows Ken’s recent appointment as President of the Australian Sustainable Built Environment Council.

NSW Minister for Planning Pru Goward, who announced the UrbanGrowth NSW appointment, said she was delighted. “It is a real boon to UrbanGrowth NSW’s efforts to transform our city living to have him on its Board,” she said.

Over the years Ken has been recognised for his contribution to many award winning projects, and  as a HASSELL Fellow he continues to focus on design and design review for HASSELL projects, including the three major new venues and public realm currently under construction at Sydney’s Darling Harbour, the new graduate School for NIDA, and Master Planning for the Kensington Campus at UNSW.

Passionate about creating places that exist in harmony with their social, cultural and ecological context, Ken has qualifications in landscape architecture and environmental studies as well as architecture. He is also a Professor of Practice in the Faculty of Built Environment at the University of UNSW.

Ken describes his new Board appointment as a wonderful opportunity. “UrbanGrowth NSW is in a great position to set new standards for urban design and sustainable development, and building the value of our communities through significant renewal projects throughout the state, and especially the Bays Precinct Sydney” he said.

“I look forward to contributing at both a strategic and detailed level, through my belief that the quality of the places we inhabit is critical to our health and wellbeing,” Ken added.

Image source: Business Events Sydney 

Wednesday 18 February 2015
Designing experiences, not just a building

We didn’t just set out to design a building – we set out to design experiences for engineering students and staff at the University of Brighton in the UK.

“That’s why HASSELL won the design competition of the university’s Advanced Engineering Centre (AEC) at its Moulsecoomb campus,” says Principal Julian Gitsham.

“Our goal is for the learning at University of Brighton to be more than just a transfer of information, and we believe the right building design can help achieve that,’ Julian said.

‘The learning environment should facilitate experiences, interact sustainably with the surrounding biodiversity, and above all, engage. This centre will encompass the entire spectrum of learning in the field of engineering, from start to finish”.

The new centre will include new and refurbished education facilities for mechanical, automotive and aerospace engineering. It will be a modern and adaptable education environment, designed for hands-on and innovative learning.

The AEC will be approximately 3,000 square metres, with a construction cost of around £14m. It is scheduled for completion in December this year.

It is the second master project HASSELL has won at the university. In 2014, we delivered a master plan to unify the universities five campuses, with an approach that will enhance each individual campus, while supporting a more vibrant and connected campus.



Friday 13 February 2015
Visitor experience central to design for Port Macquarie Hospital

Hospitals are often stressful for patients, staff and visitors. HASSELL set out to deliver a positive patient and visitor experience in the A$104 million expansion of the Port Macquarie Base Hospital, in NSW, Australia.

The newly updated building offers relief for medical staff who spend much of their time indoors in sterile environments as well as offering the local community better access to improved health care services.

Set within a natural woodland the HASSELL design creates frequent interaction with the surrounding landscape and will create 300 new jobs in the local community.

The expansion includes a seven-theatre operating suite, new 34-bed theatre recovery unit, new cardiac catheterisation laboratory, new 24-bed critical-care ward, relocation of the paediatric ward, and 200 more car parking spaces, which will ease traffic congestion.

“Functionality and seamless interaction between the internal and external environment was at the core of our design approach for this particular health project,” Jeff Menkens, HASSELL Principal said.

“Hospitals require a great level of functionality in their design, given the nature of medical work. The HASSELL design helped to ensure the health service delivery of the hospital was maintained, while still creating a space for visitors, patients and staff with an element of calm,” Jeff said.

"The result is an environment that supports the hospital to deliver world class medical treatment to its patients, while enabling adaption for future models of care and technology.”

Port Macquarie Hospital_News Image
Thursday 5 February 2015
Reviving a premier sporting precinct

HASSELL is helping shape the future of a major Australian sporting precinct – we have been awarded the design of Melbourne Park’s new Administration and Media Building, the new headquarters for Tennis Australia, the Melbourne and Olympic Parks Trust, and home to a new media centre for the Australian Open tennis.

The Grand Slam event attracts more than 600,000 spectators to Melbourne Park, along with about 600 media professionals from 300 local and international media outlets.

HASSELL Principal Glenn Scott said HASSELL is excited to be part of the reinvigoration of a site so central to Melbourne’s sporting culture. “The redevelopment of Melbourne Park will see significant improvements for those attending the many sporting and cultural events held in this precinct each year,” he said. “The redevelopment will also provide long-term security for the Australian Open event.”

“Our concept creates connections with the many event and sporting venues at Melbourne Park, where many existing structures also comprise a solid base, focused views and large protective roofs. It will also deliver an enhanced working environment for its future occupants,” Glenn added.

The Victorian Government has committed $700 million towards the redevelopment of Melbourne Park, and the Administration and Media Building is part of the redevelopment’s $338 million Stage Two. 

Melbourne Park_News Image
Wednesday 4 February 2015
Ken Maher to head ASBEC

Sustainability has been a long time passion for Ken Maher, one of Australia’s most celebrated architects and designers. Now he is bringing that passion to a new role as President of the Australian Sustainable Built Environment Council (ASBEC).  

“It is a great honour,” says Ken. “But more importantly it is a role in which I hope to play my part in putting Australian cities on a more sustainable path. I am looking forward to working with leaders of the built environment sector to deliver policy, research, dialogue and actions that improve the value of the places we inhabit.”

ASBEC represents a wide range of industry, government and academic organisations with an interest in the sustainability of the built environment in Australia. Ken says he is delighted to accept the presidency of “the peak collaborative forum for organisations that champion sustainable, productive and resilient buildings, communities and cities”.

Ken Maher has long held a prominent  design role within HASSELL. A Principal for over two decades and including nine years as Chairman, he became the inaugural HASSELL Fellow in 2014.

It is a role that allows him to focus on his first love – design – while also pursuing other interests. HASSELL is designing the new Sydney International Convention, Exhibition and Entertainment Precinct (SICEEP) in a joint venture with another design firm, Populous. Ken is the lead designer for the project, which includes three new buildings, extensive public parklands, open space and venues for meetings and events. Currently under construction, it will transform the 20-hectare site at Darling Harbour on the Sydney waterfront.

A Life Fellow and 2009 Gold Medal recipient of the Australian Institute of Architects, Ken is also a Professor of Built Environment at the University of NSW and chairs the City of Sydney’s Design Advisory Panel.

“My involvement in major design projects at HASSELL helps inform the contribution I can make in my other advisory roles,” Ken said. “They in turn contribute to the design thinking I put to work at HASSELL.”


Image source: Business Events Sydney 

Ken Maher_News Image
Tuesday 6 January 2015

MULTITUDES, the book that marked the 75th anniversary of HASSELL, has been awarded by the Australian Graphic Design Association (AGDA). It received an award for book design at AGDA’s awards ceremony at Tasmania’s Museum of Old and New Art (MONA).

The book was designed by Fabio Ongarato Design, edited by Cameron Bruhn and published by Uro Media. AGDA is the peak organisation representing the Australian graphic design industry. The AGDA awards are made for excellence across design disciplines including branding, graphic design, books and digital design.

MULTITUDES is structured around a preface and five chapters by independent authors commissioned by HASSELL. Each chapter considers an issue or movement in design in the late 20th or early 21st centuries. It is followed by an exploration of projects in the HASSELL portfolio that respond to that issue or movement. It considers the development of HASSELL from a traditional architecture firm to a modern, international design practice.

The result is an insight into design and design thinking at HASSELL, rather than a year-by-year, project-by-project history of the practice.

To order a copy of MULTITUDES follow the link.

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  • Galleries need to move away from the traditional white box

    The Louvre doesn’t do it, and neither does the Guggenheim. The Tate Modern’s new galleries make a good job of it, and the Hepworth Wakefield contemporary art gallery in Yorkshire gets close.
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  • Reinventing unused spaces and turning them into parks

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