WorkSafe Victoria’s new headquarters under construction in Geelong is Australia’s first building to be awarded WELL Precertification by the International WELL Building InstituteTM (IWBI™) in both of the two categories – Core & Shell, and Interiors – together.
Chief Executive Officer of developer Quintessential Equity, Shane Quinn, said the certification process involved a thorough assessment based on seven categories – air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort and mind.
“WELL represents the next evolution of sustainable buildings, that includes occupant wellbeing as well as environmental attributes,” he said, congratulating WorkSafe, construction partner Built and consultants Aurecon, and architect peckvvonhartel for their contributions to the milestone.
“Instinctively, we know factors like stale air quality, excessive noise and lack of access to natural light are a recipe for dissatisfaction and poor health – and the WELL assessment process guides us towards demonstrated best practice in a systematic, performance-based way.
“Your typical office worker spends 90 per cent of the day indoors, so investing in employee health and wellbeing through the work environment can show a real return on investment and productivity.
“When designing 1 Malop Street we wanted it to be a world-class office building with market-leading environmental credentials and amazing tenant amenity. We have exceeded our ambitious initial targets, achieving a 6 Star Green Star design, 5.5 Star NABERS Base Building Energy rating design as well as these latest Australian-first WELL Precertifications. It gives us immense pride to be involved with a project of this quality, which has its success engrained in the highly collaborative partnership with WorkSafe and the construction team at Built.
“In addition, with this project, Geelong is demonstrating its capacity to develop as a hub of excellence for major organisations with white-collar workforces.”
Design features contributing to the precertification of 1 Malop Street, Geelong include:
- Selection of low toxicity finishes, and high grade air filters
- Purging – the building will have air removed and replaced post completion and prior to occupation to release residual off-gases and potential airborne contaminants
- Quality acoustic performance and sound-proofing
- Water filtration and quality testing
- Lighting to minimise disruption to the body’s circadian rhythm and avoid eyestrain and associated headaches
- Maximising natural light and views over Corio Bay and Johnstone Park
- Multiple outdoor areas, including a rooftop terrace and café offering healthy foods
- Eating areas on each floor
- Use of natural materials like stone and timber
- High quality lockers and bike storage to encourage active commuting
- Sit-stand desks and activity incentive programs.
Chief Executive of WorkSafe Victoria, Clare Amies, said it was pleasing 1 Malop St had received such significant accreditation.
“A working environment that makes our staff’s health and wellbeing a clear priority will be well received throughout the organisation,” Ms Amies said.
Graham Oswin, Director Southern Region at Built, said Built had invested in the training and development of its own in-house WELL Accredited Professional to assist clients such as Quintessential Equity and WorkSafe Vic with certification.
“WELL certification and its benefits are gaining more awareness in Australia and we’re proud of our team in achieving this great outcome at 1 Malop Street, as leading example that can be applied to other builds in future,” he said.
1 Malop St is now WELL PrecertifedTM Gold for Core & Shell, with WorkSafe previously achieving WELL PrecertifiedTM Gold for the Interior Fitout.
Situated behind the historic Dalgety and Co façade, the 14-storey A Grade commercial office tower is due to be completed by the end of the year and will see WorkSafe Victoria relocate its headquarters and over 700 staff to Victoria’s second-largest city.