City of Melbourne provides support for revised Melbourne Quarter Tower

City of Melbourne provides support for revised Melbourne Quarter Tower
City of Melbourne provides support for revised Melbourne Quarter Tower

The City of Melbourne via its Future Melbourne Committee last night resolved to provide support for an amended design to Lendlease's Melbourne Quarter Tower in docklands.

Replacing an earlier endorsed scheme for a 27-storey office building of 92,086 sqm (GFA), the revised design would instead rise 32-storeys above Wurundjeri Way for an overall height of 147.15m and a GFA of 101,998sqm, thus making it docklands' tallest building.

Height and GFA aside, the form of the tower has also changed with Woods Bagot adopting a 'curved' sweeping form that is concave in plan to the west and a concave to the east. This replaces DCM's more rectilinear scheme which also included a protruding volume at its summit, known as the 'Sky Room'.

Internally the new scheme also features four x three-storey terraces above level 21, where the low-rise lift banks drop-off, though City of Melbourne believes these could be better expressed externally to aid in reducing the visual mass of the tower further.

"Noting the visibility of the form particularly from across the Fairfax building, we encourage the more direct expression of the terrace and common areas where the low rise lift drops off above Level 21. The expression of
these spaces in the elevation would greatly enhance the presentation of this long elevation through creating ‘moments’ of interest centrally within the façade, with depth, shadow play and vegetation visible. A shift to a legible winter garden or louvred glazing approach would be strongly encouraged."

- City of Melbourne's Urban Design team

City of Melbourne provides support for revised Melbourne Quarter Tower
A re-imagined Melbourne Quarter Tower. Image: Woods Bagot

The City of Melbourne's Urban Design team was otherwise supportive of the design changes highlighting the curvilinear form as adding to the diversity of the architecture in the area.  According to the Urban Design Team, the introduction of fins to add shade and depth and an ordering grid was also a welcome addition however, encouraged further development of this.

Meanwhile, work continues on another Woods Bagot-designed commercial tower in the precinct - the 25-storey Two Melbourne Quarter, with the first of the facade panels installed.

Two Melbourne Quarter joins Fender Katsalidis' East Tower which is shooting up to its eventual height of 143m and 41-storeys.

City of Melbourne provides support for revised Melbourne Quarter Tower
L-R: Two Melbourne Quarter | East Tower. Images: redden

Lendlease has already completed One Melbourne Quarter and stage 1 of the SkyPark, with the second stage to be delivered as part of Melbourne Quarter Tower.

With City of Melbourne's support in hand, the final planning hurdle to overcome remains Planning Minister Richard Wynne, although this would appear to be a mere formality.

It is expected Lendlease will look to secure an anchor tenant or significant pre-commitment for Melbourne Quarter Tower prior to commencing construction.

Laurence Dragomir

Laurence Dragomir

Laurence Dragomir is one of the co-founders of Urban Melbourne. Laurence has developed a wealth of knowledge and experience working in both the private and public sector specialising in architecture, urban design and planning. He also has a keen interest in the built environment, cities and Star Wars.

Lendlease Woods Bagot Fender Katsalidis

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