Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and Australia-based architecture firm Fender Katsalidis Architects have placed first in an international competition to design Central Place Sydney, a new landmark development at Sydney’s Central Station in the Central Business District. The $2.5 billion commercial development is expected to revitalize the city’s busiest transport interchange on the western edge of Central Station. The project will feature a vibrant public realm along with two tech-focused office towers equipped with the very first AI-driven facade system powered entirely by renewable energy. 

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Developed in partnership with developers Dexus and Frasers Property Australia, Central Place Sydney will feature a 37-story tower and a 39-story tower set on a low-rise plinth that will engage the streetscape with ground-level retail, collaborative community spaces and extensive landscaping. Designed as a core element of the district’s burgeoning Tech Central area, the mixed-use development will offer approximately 150,000 square meters of office and retail space. The ground floor is highly permeable, and all public spaces were designed with a focus on easy and efficient pedestrian flow.

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The architects expect Central Place Sydney to be one of the most sustainable commercial developments in Australia. Not only will the project include highly flexible workspaces that integrate nature via winter gardens and outdoor terraces, but indoor spaces will also have ample access to natural light and ventilation via operable windows and an automated facade system. The site-specific design approach informed the shape of the buildings, which are engineered to mitigate wind forces and maximize natural light. The computer-controlled, renewable energy-powered facade will shield the interiors from unwanted solar gain. 

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“Central Place Sydney’s focal point is a major new civic space wrapped with activated retail edges, enriched by two commercial towers and a landmark central building,” said Mark Curzon, design director for Fender Katsalidis Architects. “It will redefine the precinct, completing Sydney’s vision for a ‘third square.'”

+ Skidmore, Owings & Merrill

Images via Skidmore, Owings & Merrill