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Business and Innovation Centre
by Susan Dugdale & Associates with Stephen Lumb Architect



The Business and Innovation Centre is a key facility in the new Desert Knowledge Precinct for its long term function of developing business and initiatives based on desert knowledge, as a facility demonstrating key principals of energy efficient and environmentally sustainable design, and as a social hub for the precinct, emphasizing the importance of informal communication in developing knowledge and ideas. During the concept design stages the ESD consultant established energy consumption targets for the Business and Innovation Centre based on combined reference to the Australian Building Greenhouse Rating tool, Property Council of Australia Energy Guidelines and the draft BCA regulations for Class 5-9 buildings, and prevailing climate of Alice Springs. The preliminary target was 640Mj / annum / sqm. The predicted energy use of the final design bettered the target with an expected figure of 580Mj / annum / sqm. The Centre's predicted output of CO2 met the target figure. Those ESD initiatives chosen to take into the final design phase were found to yield the greatest benefit in terms of minimizing energy consumption and green house gas production within the limitation of the budget and brief, and include: o Air conditioning with economy cycle, and mixed-mode to allow natural ventilation via operable windows. o Night purging. o Thermal mass. o Natural daylighting. o High reflective roofing. o Mass ventilated roof space. o Heavily insulated external walls. o External sun shading to all windows o Use of low heat transmitting glass to minimize heat gain through

the glazing o A design temperature of 26 degrees in summer, instead of the typical constant 22 degrees. ESD strategies that were assessed and rejected were still important in developing the best outcome for the client, and include a solar chimney for ventilation, a thermal labyrinth for pre-cooling air, fly roofs and a comprehensive BMS. The Business and Innovation Centre is located on the north east side of the Desert Peoples Courtyard at the hub of the Desert Knowledge Precinct. It is one of a group of significant buildings located on this central ceremonial courtyard. The design responds to its location on the Desert Peoples Courtyard and the importance of the Business and Innovation Centre as a social focal point for the precinct. The core ideas informing the design include: o Designed for ‘loose fit, long life’. o A rectilinear, compact form to meet the site constraints, develop efficient circulation and to maximise options for wall materials and treatments. o Preservation of the endemic corkwoods to enhance courtyard and outdoor spaces associated with the centre. o Maximise the north aspect within tight east west constraints through development of courtyards. o ‘Transparent’ staff room to give the facility an accessible human face, as well as to identify it as a ‘meeting place’ open to all members of the precinct. o The Reception and Foyer area provides a visual and pedestrian link through the building. o Common facilities located in the centre of the building can be used for functions independently of the office areas.

Alice Springs, NT
Susan Dugdale & Associates with Stephen Lumb Architect
Contact address:
Project Team
Project manager: Sue Dugdale
Project manager: Stephen Lumb
Project manager: Sue Dugdale
Project manager: Stephen Lumb
Structural consultant: NJA Consulting Pty Ltd
Mechanical consultant: MGF Consultants Pty Ltd
Interior designer: Susan Dugdale & Associates and Stephen Lumb Archit
Environmental consultant: Cundall
Quantity consultant: Davis Langdon
Builder: MBY Carpentry and Construction Pty Ltd
Drafting: Marijke Coenders
Drafting: David Havercroft
Drafting: Homer Coderre
Drafting: Marijke Coenders
Drafting: David Havercroft
Drafting: Homer Coderre
Photographer: Sue Dugdale and Brendan Chan
Photographer: Barry Skipsey
Photographer: Brendan Chan

Photographs by Sue Dugdale and Brendan Chan, Barry Skipsey & Brendan Chan, text by Susan Dugdale & Associates with Stephen Lumb Architect

Link directly to this award entry: is the website of The Royal Australian Institute of Architects