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Work begins on Gungahlin penal battalion headquarters

By johnboy 21 October 2013 20

gungahlin place and valley avenue

Andrew Barr has announced the start of construction of the complex to house those ACT Public Servants so unloved as to be despatched to deepest darkest Gungahlin.

Construction is about to start on the new ACT Government Office Block on the corner of The Valley Avenue and Gungahlin Place in the Gungahlin Town Centre.

Local development company the KDN Group, together with their project partners Lend Lease, AECOM, William Boag Architects and peckvonhartel were chosen after a rigorous evaluation of five high quality submissions.

An agreement for lease has been signed and it is expected that the building will be ready for occupation by mid 2015.

Accommodating about 600 ACT Government staff, the office block will be built to a high environmental standard with a minimum 4.5 star NABERS rating and provide A-Grade standard accommodation. An ACT Government shopfront and a child care centre with about 90 places will be included in the development.


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UPDATE: Andrew Barr’s office have sent in some design renders of the building complete with ghostly employees!

internal render

external render


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Work begins on Gungahlin penal battalion headquarters
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Masquara 8:12 pm 23 Oct 13

There was a “By Design” hour on the then trend for open plan offices a few years ago on Radio National. I think Macquarie Bank’s then-new Sydney head office was the main subject being touted. Interestingly, not one employee was interviewed about their responses to the new workplace. I haven’t been able to identify any valid reports on whether employees actually thrive in this sort of environment. Just building developer spin.
– I believe there’s a strong desire for stability, and to have one’s own space to put and keep things around one. Why else would having your own office be a reward for making it up the ladder?
– People whose work involves a lot of meetings might well be fine sitting at long tables all day with each other – but consider those who need quiet to concentrate and think.
– Antisocial folk who heat oily fish for lunch (yes, we have one) will stink the building out, and even curry lunches could be annoying.
– Macquarie made much of providing “comfortable enveloping pod seats” for a handful of employees. Just picture the early arrivers hogging those vestiges of comfort and privacy all day!
– How do you ensure ergonomic working conditions – given the way we’ve been told for years by government agencies that our desk height and seat height are very important?
– Disability issue – just how are folk who suffer from Aspergers going to be accommodated? And leaving aside Aspergers – how are people who aren’t extroverted and don’t like constant in-your-face interaction with their colleagues going to be accommodated? The answer: they won’t. They will have a hell time at work.
– Just one loud voice in the building pictured will (inevitably) be a nuisance. And there WILL be an employee with an exceptionally loud voice.
Will Andrew Barr’s staff be working in similar open plan conditions? I guarantee not. Because they are crap. No-one wants open plan taken to an extreme like this.
Just as this travesty is completed, I bet a report will finally come out with incontrovertible evidence that employees’ cortisone levels in open plan office environments are so high as to affect performance. And cutting-edge work environments will look after people’s actual preferences.
Of my own immediate colleagues (three teams totalling 26 people, and a mix of policy and corporate work) I am certain that only three or four of them would cope with, let alone thrive in, this sort of work environment.
FAIL IN THE MAKING!

taninaus 8:05 pm 23 Oct 13

pink little birdie said :

wildturkeycanoe said :

Why do they build offices with massive big voids in the middle like in the picture? They could have put in another 300 people if the huge hole had floors in its place. Any other structure would have to comply with some kind of density figure, why not the “open air” government? Waste of space.
Also, with all the upcoming redundancies as promised by the Liberal party, who exactly is going to work here? There’s going to be a lot of vacant seats…..

Considering its a building for the ACT Public Service rather than the Federal Public service I’m going to take a wild guess and say the ACT Public Service.

and very few redundancies in the ACT Public Service, unlike the federal mob. We have the Labor party locally – hence yesterdays news!

the void probably has something to do with access to natural light – and it will stop it feeling like sardines inside (although the number of people per m2 has probably gone up) as you shouldn’t be more than about 4 people away from the view.

milkman 6:02 pm 23 Oct 13

poetix said :

damien haas said :

Anything would be an improvement on Macarthur House.

Except the location?

Beat me to it!

poetix 4:59 pm 23 Oct 13

damien haas said :

Anything would be an improvement on Macarthur House.

Except the location?

damien haas 3:38 pm 23 Oct 13

Anything would be an improvement on Macarthur House.

FB 2:17 pm 23 Oct 13

Zeital said :

I’m still not convinced that moving all of the ACTPS to one place is really the best idea.

Since when has the ACT PS only employed 600 people? WOW we mus have failry efficent Public employees. My hats off to you boys and girls

steveu 5:01 pm 22 Oct 13

Pork Hunt said :

Growling Ferret said :

I can guarantee there would be plenty of Gungahlin residents / potential staff happy to have <5 minute travel time and free parking as opposed to a 30+ minute commute and $13 a day for the pleasure of parking in the city.

I can guarantee the introduction of pay parking in Gungahlin by opening day…

Yeahp!

And you will have half of them driving across town to get to there, as a 90 min bus trip each way simply isn’t worth it.

davo101 11:15 am 22 Oct 13

Roundhead89 said :

Oh God, open plan offices. That sort of thing went out in the 1970s.

What planet have you been on for the last 30 years?

Anyway it would appear from the renders that we looking at an activity-based office (or what is described as hot-desking without a desk).

Spiral 10:41 am 22 Oct 13

Roundhead89 said :

Oh God, open plan offices. That sort of thing went out in the 1970s.

They did. But then Energy Efficient Building came in and suddenly they all had huge open central areas. Though this one does seem a bit more open than most Energy Efficient ones I’ve seen.

It looks a bit like they got the plans for the Caroline Chisholm Centre in Tuggeranong cheap and then modified it. I wonder if they used the same architects. If so they had better use a different building company unless they like the glass panels falling off.

Zeital 10:26 am 22 Oct 13

Pork Hunt said :

Is “butch” a new collective noun for stupid people?

No that is just me failing to check before I post >> or am I starting something?

Roundhead89 10:07 am 22 Oct 13

Oh God, open plan offices. That sort of thing went out in the 1970s.

pink little birdie 9:59 am 22 Oct 13

wildturkeycanoe said :

Why do they build offices with massive big voids in the middle like in the picture? They could have put in another 300 people if the huge hole had floors in its place. Any other structure would have to comply with some kind of density figure, why not the “open air” government? Waste of space.
Also, with all the upcoming redundancies as promised by the Liberal party, who exactly is going to work here? There’s going to be a lot of vacant seats…..

Considering its a building for the ACT Public Service rather than the Federal Public service I’m going to take a wild guess and say the ACT Public Service.

Pork Hunt 9:48 am 22 Oct 13

Zeital said :

Growling Ferret said :

I can guarantee there would be plenty of Gungahlin residents / potential staff happy to have <5 minute travel time and free parking as opposed to a 30+ minute commute and $13 a day for the pleasure of parking in the city.

Sure and the rest of us get to enjoy a 45min trip on the parkway/GDE with a butch of other stupid people on the road all heading to the same place.

I’m still not convinced that moving all of the ACTPS to one place is really the best idea.

Is “butch” a new collective noun for stupid people?

Zeital 8:35 am 22 Oct 13

Growling Ferret said :

I can guarantee there would be plenty of Gungahlin residents / potential staff happy to have <5 minute travel time and free parking as opposed to a 30+ minute commute and $13 a day for the pleasure of parking in the city.

Sure and the rest of us get to enjoy a 45min trip on the parkway/GDE with a butch of other stupid people on the road all heading to the same place.

I’m still not convinced that moving all of the ACTPS to one place is really the best idea.

wildturkeycanoe 6:49 am 22 Oct 13

Why do they build offices with massive big voids in the middle like in the picture? They could have put in another 300 people if the huge hole had floors in its place. Any other structure would have to comply with some kind of density figure, why not the “open air” government? Waste of space.
Also, with all the upcoming redundancies as promised by the Liberal party, who exactly is going to work here? There’s going to be a lot of vacant seats…..

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd 11:05 pm 21 Oct 13

Not cool to make light of penal battalions…

Pork Hunt 9:44 pm 21 Oct 13

Growling Ferret said :

I can guarantee there would be plenty of Gungahlin residents / potential staff happy to have <5 minute travel time and free parking as opposed to a 30+ minute commute and $13 a day for the pleasure of parking in the city.

I can guarantee the introduction of pay parking in Gungahlin by opening day…

dkNigs 9:16 pm 21 Oct 13

I’d rather work there than Tuggeranong.

Growling Ferret 9:01 pm 21 Oct 13

I can guarantee there would be plenty of Gungahlin residents / potential staff happy to have <5 minute travel time and free parking as opposed to a 30+ minute commute and $13 a day for the pleasure of parking in the city.

neanderthalsis 4:07 pm 21 Oct 13

At least they will be able to catch the tram if they find that they need to visit the mothership.

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