Oxigen’s own studio fitout in Halifax was the winner of the Office Fitout Category prize at the 2015 Sustainability Awards. Their significant investment in sustainable outcomes for their own office was celebrated by the expert judges who selected the project from a strong field of five finalists and a record number of entries. Scroll to the bottom to see comments from our jury on this industry leading office design.
The Oxigen Halifax Studio illustrates a 'different' way of crafting buildings in the city; one that values above all the existing streetscape and importance of community.
The form, openness to the street and use of raw materials captures the qualities of the street and neighbourhood in ways that are both new and surprising.
The design arranges spaces to connect with the street ('shop-front'). The last bay of the former concrete block warehouse was removed to create a new rear courtyard with green wall and semi-mature shade tree.
What is traditionally labelled the 'boardroom' becomes a transitional space between inside and out - this opens out to welcome the street.
The bike racks at the entry replace the traditional 'check-in, check-out' staff board. The building is clearly a modern intervention in the streetscape, yet it fits in comfortably, inspiring confidence in contemporary, innovative and sustainable architecture.
The interior layout has been developed to minimize energy consumption whilst maintaining a comfortable working environment. The moto is "in winter, put a jumper on; in summer, wear shorts".
Underfloor heating provides a passive and comfortable ambient temperature in winter. The need for heating and cooling is almost eliminated by smart materials choice, natural lighting, insulation, and cross-ventilation (courtyard to street). The last two quarterly electricity bills have been $1,800 for each quarter.
The rooftop garden supplies produce for office employees including herbs and citrus fruits. The garden is also an experimental resource for the testing of plants for staff projects.
- Hydronic heating
- Materiality is long-lasting and low-maintenance
- Green wall established in the rear courtyard
- Retention and re-use of the existing building shell
- LED lights
- Social, economic and environmental sustainability - sustains community and a happy work culture
- Use of smart materials - considers whole of life value and maintenance requirements
- Minimisation of energy consumption through design with respect to environment
- Creativity in design and efficiency of production - sharing a conversation of good design within the greater city community
“This exemplary small scale project has big ideas that impressed from the outset. The Halifax Studio is an impressive infill office/studio in Adelaide which not only features a striking exterior design but demonstrates a significant investment in sustainable outcomes.
“The participatory process which was utilised from the projects’ inception has created a truly inspirational space within which to work and co-create. Health and well-being were paramount in the design but there was also an astute attention to improving the environmental performance of the building which was supported by actual data.
“It is a great example of passive design and the integration of nature into the fabric of our built environment. The combination of plants, light, air quality and the flow of indoor and outdoor space creates a fantastic environment for people (as opposed to ticking the boxes of energy and water efficiency).”
The award for Office Fitout was proudly sponsored by Enviratile