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Taking the extra step to bring Smith Street to life Print

August 1, 2014

A new development at 132-172 Smith Street Collingwood, an inner Melbourne suburb, is restoring the character of the old neighbourhood. Known as Smith&Co, the multipurpose site contains a mix of 238 apartments spread over two buildings, gardens and a commercial area containing office space, cafes and retail outlets.

This is not just another inner city apartment block; JAM Architects has drawn on the history of the site to create a vibrant space for residents and the wider community. The iconic Coles store that dominated Smith street for so long has now gone, but the supermarket chain has returned with a modern 3,561sqm store on the ground level of the building and is complemented by numerous shops and cafes with street frontage.

As was practiced in the past, residents are encouraged to shop from local suppliers, or pick what they need from the communal organic herb and vegetable garden on the site's northern boundary. A large entertaining deck in the European garden celebrates the influence of Italian and Greek immigrants to the area, while the eucalypts and shade structures of the indigenous garden provide a place to relax.

Fantech supplied fans for the retail/speciality stores, acoustic louvres and apartment fans for the project. Rival Air Director Andrew Stewart said 21 Fantech JetVent fans for the unique four-entry car park with 432 spaces were also supplied. JetVent fans operate on well proven longitudinal tunnel ventilation principles and have been used in numerous car park installations in Australia where they effectively direct air flow throughout the car park to the exhaust fan.

Fantech Engineering Manager, Kerry Dumicich said the EC range of JetVent fans had been specified in the design of Smith&Co because they were quieter, easier to install and more economical to run. "Each JetVent fan in the EC series can have up to two pollutant sensors and an integrated smoke detection kit that is powered by the actual fan. Real time information is digitally transmitted between the fan units and the EcoVent Controller using ComLink, JetVent's digital communication system. In automatic mode, the controller responds to signals from the pollutant and smoke detection sensors and adjusts the speed of the fan to match the level of carbon monoxide or nitrous oxide in the car park," he said.

Since Jet fans are relatively new to Australia they have not been listed in AS/NZS1668.1:1998. As a result they are outside of the 'deemed-to-satisfy' provisions of the Building Code of Australia from a fire and smoke control perspective.

"In order to obtain confirmation that JetVent fans with integrated smoke detectors comply with the BCA as an alternative solution, this project was submitted to the Building Appeals Board,” Kerry said.

Fantech worked closely with Hacer and Lehr Consultants International to prepare a case for the Building Appeals Board. "A Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) model of the car park showing the location of the fans, sprinkler head temperatures and movement of air and smoke in various scenarios formed part of the evidence," he said.

The Building Appeals Board determined that the alternative solution for Fantech JetVent EC fans in Smith&Co’s car park complied with the relevant performance clauses of the BCA. "This was the landmark project for jet fans showing how to achieve compliance with the BCA," Andrew said.

The first stage of the project opened in September 2015.

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