New Zealand Commercial Design Trends Series NZ Commercial Design Trends Vol. 30/6 - Page 11

Preceding pages and below: The Three35 mixed-use precinct by Jasmax presents a dramatic face to the street. The project comprises two near-identical buildings enclosing a green courtyard with a carpark building tucked discreetly behind. In the three years following one of New Zealand’s most significant natural disasters, Christchurch architects have had to bring fresh focus to their designs. Expansive, versatile floorplates and energy efficiency are ever key drivers, but now resilience, social-mindedness and a quest to reanimate the city streetscape are also part of the agenda. Three35, by Jasmax with architect Richard Hayman at the helm, comprises two, three-storey mixed-use office-and-retail blocks and a discreet, highly automated garage at the rear. “The vision for this job was to create a desirable office-and-mixed use precinct that responds well to, and enhances, its local context,” says Hayman. “Lincoln Road is a main arterial route in and out of Addington, an area of flux both pre and post quake. “The precinct has a central, 100m-long street presence and a commanding corner position in this emerging inner-city suburb. In response to the prime setting, the decision was made to challenge set-back rules to create a higher quality street environment. This move would also free up a quarter of the site for usable outdoor space. “With this approved, we designed the precinct as two similar rectilinear office blocks, and pushed these to the front of the site. This arrangement allows the life of the building occupants – whether offices or retail – to engage with the street. The simple forms also result in large, flexible floorplates. The carpark building is tucked in behind, with vehicular access from a side street. This contrasts the more traditional model in the area, where the building is set back, presenting the rather utilitarian sight of parked cars to the street.” The greater design picture for Three35 was to contribute to the social fabric of the community. To this end, the area between the buildings was utilised as an internal grassed courtyard, a facility previously lacking in Addington. There are no gates, and passers-by, as well as workers from both buildings, are encouraged to use the open space. To create a strong architectural presence, both buildings have angled front facades, presenting changing aspects when viewed from different directions. Tall windows and doors at ground level offer glimpses into offices or access into retail spaces. Three35’s impressive black facades are made even more dramatic by a brise soleil – a series of vertical and horizontal black powdercoated aluminium fins applied to the curtain wall facade. This functions as an aesthetic link that ties the two buildings together and provides passive shading. The dramatic livery is continued in other ways, too. Central lobbies are clad in black-backed glass. Set beside these, internal social stairs are highly visible from the courtyard, further animating the design. These stairs feature a custom laser-cut balustrading that continues the look of the black SEARCH | SAVE | SHARE AT 9