Michael Cameron

12 July 2010 – The GPT Group last week launched the upgrade to its premium-grade office building at 530 Collins Street in Melbourne to an early morning crowd of about 100 people.

The tower is expected to score 5 stars for NABERS Energy after a major refurbishment that includes one of Melbourne’s few co-generation plants on its podium roof, and a refurbishment that comes complete with performance contract over the plant, the lighting and new water-efficient cooling towers.

GPT chief executive officer and managing director Michael Cameron said the upgrade to 530 Collins Street was proof
that a landmark building of such stature could also “lead the market in terms of energy efficiency, maintain its
market leadership position, remaining relevant to customers.”

“Space in this high performing asset continues to be sought after by socially responsible, market leading tenants,” Mr Cameron said.

“The improvements are in line with GPT’s strategy to continually add value to its existing portfolio to
provide premium customer experiences.”

According to a GPT a survey of tenants among its commercial portfolio has found that 91 per cent rank sustainability as being “very important or important to their business”.

Better amenity
A key to the upgrade of the building was to “greater style, amenity and comfort for occupants and visitors while significantly reducing the environmental impact of the building’s operations,” a GPT report on the upgrade said.

“Very visible to any visitor to the building is the new ground floor foyer that provides greater presence and a more inviting transparency through to the main Collins Street entrance.

“In addition to the impressive new entrance foyer, the property accommodates four levels of basement car parking and 36-levels of quality office accommodation.

“The refurbishment also includes new coffee shops, informal meeting spaces, interesting food options and a large seated area underneath the stunning atrium.

“The improvement of 530 Collins Street has provided economic, environmental and community returns.”

Tracking 5 Star Performance
A key to the work was an energy performance contract as a “mechanism to upgrade plant and equipment in the building to improve efficiency, and to introduce a low carbon energy supply with the outcome being a guaranteed 5 star NABERS Energy rating.”

The targets for the EPC, which started on 1 April this year are:

  • 5 star NABERS energy efficiency rating;
  • Energy savings of $360,000 a year;
  • A carbon reduction of 4700 tonnes a year
  • Achieving these savings without compromising on service or productivity of space.

“These targets result in a 40 per cent reduction in annual greenhouse emissions when compared to an industry average 2.5 star building.”

Most of these savings can be attributed to the co-gen plant, GPT said.