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Annexe to Parliament House
May 29, 2019

Built over a two year period, the new Parliament of Victoria Member’s Annexe is providing much-needed office space to the members of the Victorian Parliament.

The project, managed by the Department of Parliamentary Services for the Parliament of Victoria, solves a long-standing accommodation problem and replaces outdated temporary accommodation built in the 1970s.

The new Annexe building, designed by Peter Elliott Architecture + Urban Design, is a completely free-standing structure from Parliament House and is set within the eastern gardens of the triangular precinct bounded by Spring, Macarthur and Albert streets.

Conceived as a companion building to Parliament House, much of the Annexe building has been constructed below ground level to allow it to blend seamlessly with its surrounds.

Integrated multi-discipline consultancy Irwinconsult was awarded the project’s engineering consultancy services. They worked closely with a creative and professional project team led by the architect to provide building services, civil, structural, ESD and waste management design on the project.

Designed and constructed to a 5 star Green Star Design, As Built and Interiors equivalency, the Annexe building features an innovative mechanical services design that includes a unique geo-exchange condenser water system that provides both cooling and heating. Comprising a network of 100m deep boreholes, this system eliminates the need for a gas supply for heating whilst offering excellent operating efficiencies.

Another ESD feature of the building is an in-ground labyrinth ductwork system that preconditions the outside air supply to common areas including corridors, lobbies & breakout spaces.

According to Irwinconsult, a key objective of the project was to deliver a high level of thermal comfort to each office, as well as allow individual temperature control while maximising energy efficiency.

To help meet these objectives, while overcoming the limited ceiling space available, Rickard Linear VAV electronic diffusers were installed in all offices and connected to even pressure supply/return ductwork. Supplied by Fantech, these units were selected for their ability to align with the architectural intent of the project while also allowing occupants to adjust set point temperatures to their desired level.

Additionally, VAV diffusers enable a single zoned fan coil unit (FCU) to serve multiple offices – in this case approximately 5-8 offices zoned by orientation. They also allow additional energy efficiencies to be incorporated, including the ability to completely shut the diffuser within an office whose window is open. This prevents loss of heated or cooled air and averts the introduction of additional outside air load onto the common FCUs.

Fantech assisted Irwinconsult with the implementation of the Rickard Linear VAV electronic diffusers on the project, as well as selection of all ventilation fans for outside air, general exhaust and toilet exhaust systems serving the new Annexe building.

“We were able to select fans capable of achieving the required duties while minimising energy consumption and noise generation – and also fitting within the limited plantroom and ceiling space,” says Michael Barber, Associate – Mechanical for Irwinconsult.

Completed on budget, the new Parliament of Victoria Member’s Annexe was officially opened in August 2018 by the Governor of Victoria, the Hon. Linda Dessau AC.


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