Zurich Australia's renewed push to develop its North Sydney headquarters

Zurich Australian Property Holding Pty Ltd has taken its proposed commercial tower on Mount Street, North Sydney back to planning.

Part of Zurich Financial Services Australia, the property offshoot lodged the latest version of its 29 storey tower last week. The refined proposal has seen the expected cost of the development rise to $118 million, above the figure of $103 million which was associated with the initial application which landed with North Sydney Council early last year.

Architects Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp were successful in winning the 118 Mount Street's design competition, eventually conceiving a curving edifice that spans the best part of 110 metres in height.

It's unclear if the latest iteration of the design has wavered substantially from the circulated render of the 29 storey tower below.

118 Mount Street. Image: FJMT

According to the AFR, Zurich is intending to account for an amount of space in the new tower, with the balance to be leased out.

Zurich's initial application found approval during July 2017 and included end of trip facilities plus a green rooftop terrace, albeit at a lower height of 23 storeys; in line with initial expectations, the tower looks to have been bumped back up to 29 storeys according to the latest submission.

The current yet dated Mount Street office block that is set to be replaced includes 5 levels of commercial space above a ground floor retail tenancy. In addition to 118 Mount Street, Zurich also owns a substantial land holding at 5 Blue Street nearby. 

A 2017 render of the tower's ground level exterior. Image: FJMT

Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp's approved 2017 scheme for 118 Mount Street is a continuation of their successful commercial design logic which has seen a string of projects share similar design traits.

In Sydney, the architecture practice is behind the completed Darling Quarter and 200 George Street commercial projects, with the latter skyscraper completed during 2016. 200 George is one of Australia's most environmentally advanced and sustainable buildings, receiving Australia’s first Gold WELL-certification for its tenancy during 2017, in addition to a 6 Green Star As-Built rating.

In Melbourne, Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp are behind a current mid-rise commercial application at 200-202 Victoria Parade in East Melbourne.

It includes a Net Leasable Area of 27,435 square metres, end of trip facilities plus outdoor terraces, and is backed by 200 Victoria Parade Development Pty Ltd.

Selected FJMT commercial projects. Images: Commercial RE, Time and Place, FJMT

Lead image: Jagonal

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