Greenland: a new 40 storey apartment building grafted to an existing 24 storey office building

An innovative approach to sustainable urban development

The retention of the existing building constructed in the 1960s enabled Greenland to demonstrate an innovative approach to sustainable urban development by using the extant steel frame as the basis for an enlarged structure; to demonstrate that an office building can readily be converted to an apartment building and by a collaboration with the City of Sydney to provide a range of public performance, recording and studio spaces for the citizens of Sydney.

This visual dynamic results in a building that not only reveals an interesting and dynamic composition on the skyline but reveals the narrative of a new tower planted upon an existing building – a sustainable outcome that prevented waste, time, inconvenience and discarded energy required to demolish the lower tower and build a completely new structure.

Tall building sitting on top of another building.
Greenland Centre. Photo courtesy BVN

Reinventing the emblematic Australian verandah on a 40-storey apartment tower

The Australian verandah has always been the “outdoor room” of Australian residential architecture. The Greenland Centre’s upper tower was unable to utilise balcony structures from Level 26, due to wind issues and pressure systems. This presented a unique opportunity to develop a solution that created a whole new spatial experience in high-rise residential towers.

View of city skyline with Sydney Tower visible to left.
North Verandah at night, Greenland Centre. Photo courtesy BVN
Looking out towards city and harbour.
Verandah balcony at night, Greenland Centre. Photo courtesy BVN
Interior shot with furnishings looking out towards view.
Interior of living room, Balcony, Greenland Centre. Photo courtesy BVN

BVN's innovative approach to the upper tower was based upon the proposition of the ‘Sydney Verandah’. Operating as a purpose-designed, glass-enclosed, balcony system, projected off the building, the balconies provide protection from wind and noise, whilst allowing natural ventilation to deliver an outdoor lifestyle. With timber floors and soffits, an external room is created that resonates with the characteristics of a truly unique Australian “place” within the ubiquitous international typology of the tall apartment tower.


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