Our client had recently purchased an existing supermarket site. The vision was to convert this supermarket building into new commercial offices for Genesis, in the most sustainable way possible.
Greenstone wanted to offer the benefit of our extensive experience for this type of development to both the owner and the tenant.
The new office building had been given a seismic rating of IL4 special function in a disaster and as a result, it made the reuse of the existing supermarket structure extremely challenging. Complying with this seismic rating was of paramount importance and so was keeping it sustainable.
As the vision was to retain the existing structure in tandem with the new one, this led to some interesting space development as the new structure was a quarter-story higher than the original mezzanine levels within the building. An atrium between the two buildings was included to interconnect those spaces along one edge. In addition, the project key stakeholders were in a transition phase. Getting information from them during this transition was not an easy process. A further consequence of this was that the brief and expectations changed a number of times.
We facilitated regular meetings to keep everyone informed throughout. We used our office development experience and some clever integration of technology to keep the project viable despite these challenges and the unique seismic aspects of the build.
The Genesis building was completed in November 2017 and the initial feedback has been unanimously positive. The building successfully integrates the old and new structures while complying seismically. The building is fully leased and has been from within three months of the structure starting.
The aesthetics of the building have been well received by both council and community. It went through an urban design panel review and social interaction expectations that Council expressed a desire for were incorporated into the final design.
This building taught us a lot about IL4 and the issues it can cause for bracing of services, acoustic separation and penetrations through the structure. This will give us a strong foundation to work from the next time we come across the IL4 designation.