After a long morning out seeing the house Airlie, we decided we had done our Open House adventures for the day. We had to go into town to buy some chocolates as a gift for a friend who had invited us for dinner in the evening. As we passed Melbourne Town Hall in the tram we noticed the building next to the town hall was open and I have always wanted to see it. When Open House began, there used to be huge queues but no queues were obvious to us.
The building is City of Melbourne offices and known as Council House 2. It has a six star energy rating and opened in 2006. You can see the facade and more details about CH2 at Wikipedia. The timber shutters at the front of the building move automatically, depending on the weather, sunlight and the time.
One poster mentions that while office pot plants normally need to be rotated every two months, in CH2 the air is of such high quality that the plants thrive for much longer before they need changing. The other mentions purge windows that open at night to let hot air out and cool fresh air in. It suggests that the savings in productivity and reduced sick leave over a conventional office building is above $2 million a year, so the building is well on the way to paying for its green credentials.
The reception desk is made from fallen storm victim trees in Fawkner Park. We went up in the lift to mid building and listened to a short lecture from one of the designers. He spoke of all sorts of features, like water running down outside windows for cooling, cold water panels in the ceilings, black and grey water recycling., lighting, heating, on and on but I could have listened to a lot more. He was being time managed by staff though.
We climbed stairs to the rooftop. I think it is an eleven storey building, which is not that high, but there were fine views. The Commonwealth Bank building dominates in this photo.
A demonstration was under way. After buying the chocolates we caught a tram straight home, which was just a crawl with many trams in front of us, all delayed by the demonstration.
Two wonderful buildings, Manchester Unity House on the left and the Century Building on the right. The last time I was in the Century Building a couple of years ago, it still had a lift operator, which rather stymied my snooping and snapping plans.
The three yellow towers vent air and they the turbines used to generate electricity but they were deemed too expensive to maintain over what they generated, so they were locked into a static position. A few of the building's features were changed. I recall the interior lighting had to be upgraded as staff found the interior too dark.
The 88 storey Eureka Tower on the south bank of the Yarra River.
This is an artist's concept of the rooftop garden. Believe me, it was nothing like that with very little greenery and the only reason you would visit up there is for the views. They are however experimenting with various plants up there, so it is actually a roof top horticultural lab.
Melbourne Town Hall clock and the spire of St Pauls with the Arts Centre Spire across the river in the background. While it makes no sense to me at all, the Highrise can be seen just to the right of the church spire about two kilometres away.
I had to work the next day, Sunday, but R had his own little Open House adventure. More another day.