Leading Australian architecture firm Bates Smart has completed a next-generation coworking space fitout at the iconic ICI House in Melbourne for Hub Australia.

Bates Smart delivered the premium coworking workplace space for Hub Australia’s latest Melbourne venture – Hub Parliament Station on Nicholson Street in East Melbourne.

Spanning an area of 2,775 square metres, the new coworking space occupies the top three floors of the historically significant 18-level ICI House, currently known as Orica House. Originally designed by Bates Smart + McCutcheon in 1958, ICI House was Australia’s first skyscraper.

“The original design of ICI House was the inspiration for Hub Parliament Station with its human-centric, forward-thinking approach to how people work,” says Bates Smart director Kellie Payne.

“After six decades, the building still remains relevant today and surpasses modern wellbeing criteria as it is set to house the next evolution of working by welcoming Hub to its top floors,” notes Payne.

Taking inspiration from its base building’s mid-century classic design with a Palm Springs-like influence, the Hub Parliament Station interior draws in the surrounding parklands with lush planting throughout. All private member offices are positioned along the building’s perimeter, combining plenty of natural light with generous views to the parklands and city.

“The building is open and invites natural light with the most incredible views of Melbourne with aspects that overlook the Parliament Gardens and the top-end of Spring Street, and the other over the Carlton Gardens with the Royal Exhibition Building in the background,” adds Payne.

Hub Parliament Station is designed to accommodate over 500 members, and includes a café, integrated barista bar/hot desks, a boardroom, large serviced meeting rooms, private offices, member kitchen and lounge, fitness centre, parent and wellness rooms and a media hub.

“The design has been informed by a detailed analysis of Hub Australia’s member experiences, understanding their typical day, lifestyle and working behaviours. From their morning coffee, schedule of meetings with clients, interests in exercise or time for a mid-morning yoga session and need for a quieter environment to reply to emails,” said Payne.

Hub Australia CEO and founder, Brad Krauskopf said, “We’re proud to have partnered with the award-winning Bates Smart team to design Hub Australia’s first skyscraper coworking space in the iconic ICI House. We always look for unique buildings with a story and a history that our coworking members can then weave into their own, and Hub Parliament Station is an exciting new space, which will deliver our members a premium coworking experience in an exceptional Melbourne CBD location.”

Photography by Anson Smart