Fund manager Investa, with joint venture partner Oxford Properties Group, is pushing ahead with a major North Sydney project, lodging plans for a $500 million commercial tower.
The development is slated for a 6,650sq m site, running between 105 to 151 Miller Street, currently occupied by the 63-year-old MLC Building.
The 27-storey development will be known as 105 Miller Street and, if approved, will add 74,000sq m of net lettable area to the fast-growing North Sydney office market.
The proposed tower will sit within an emerging cluster of high-rise towers being developed around the planned Victoria Cross Metro Station.
The design for the tower has been put together by architecture firm Bates Smart, taking cues from 30 St Mary Axe, or “the Gherkin”, and 20 Fenchurch Street, or the “Walkie Talkie” in London, intending to create an architecturally distinct landmark against the North Sydney skyline.
The development, earmarked as North Sydney’s first net zero commercial building, is targeting a 6 Star Green Star office design rating and 5.5-Star NABERS Energy Rating.
The design of the facade will manage summer solar heat gain while providing daylight, views and natural ventilation while on site renewable energy will be generated via solar photovoltaic panels on the buildings northern face.
The proposed A-grade office building will feature floorplates ranging from 5,000sq m at the base of the building tapering to 1,300sq m at its peak.
Over half of the site will be dedicated to public amenity with 3,800sq m planned as civic and community areas, as well as 120 car parks at the base of the building along with spaces for 802 bicycles.
The tower's proximity to the North Sydney Rail Station and the under construction Victoria Cross Metro Underground Station is also expected to be a drawcard for prospective tenants.
Investa head of commercial development Mark Tait told The Urban Developer a working group dedicated to exploring the future of work practices had now been established to explore innovations in tenant workplace design and flexible workspace products in response to the ongoing pandemic.
“This ongoing body of work and its integration into the design is fundamental to the quality of office space proposed for 105 Miller Street development,” Tait said.
“It includes new smart building initiatives such as contactless technology at the base building level, including options for touchless taps, entry doors and bathroom facilities, as well as technologies to enable real-time tracking of occupancy numbers.
“These post Covid-19 future ways of working considerations will be further explored within the next phase of design development.”
Tait said the project would be the first significant redevelopment since North Sydney Council announced stage two of their North Sydney CBD Public Domain Strategy.
The once-daggy commercial precinct of North Sydney is currently undergoing a renaissance, with several new developments recently completed or under way which are expected to transform the suburb and entice thousands of new workers to the area.
Projects including 100 Mount Street being delivered by Dexus, Winten's 1 Denison Street and CBRE Global Investors's 118 Mount Street project have now completed construction while Lendlease's $1.2 billion Victoria Cross Tower over the Metro Station recently received approval.
Sydney developer Thirdi has listed a mega development site—comprising five buildings between 2-4 Blue Street and 1-5 William Street— slated to be home to a $330 million development.
Other groups such as Mirvac have also used the strata renewal strategy to access commercial sites in North Sydney.