• Location

    1A Frome Road, Adelaide

  • Completed

    October 2019

  • Architect

    JPE Architects

  • Area


  • Type

    Fitout, Heritage

  • Delivery Type

    Construction Management

  • Duration

    5 months

  • Project Manager

    Renewal SA

An inspirational setting for ingenious minds

Situated in the heart of Adelaide, the state-of-the-art Lot Fourteen neighbourhood is home to some of Australia’s best innovators and thought leaders in a host of emerging and fast-evolving industries.

Undertaken as part of the Lot Fourteen Heritage Refurbishment Program, the two-level refurbishment at the Margaret Graham Building has been designed to accommodate a series of tenants from across the defence, space, and emerging technology industries.

While respecting the heritage of the building, our construction team has delivered contemporary office spaces in collaboration with Renewal SA, JPE Architects, and WSP that inspire creativity and ingenuity.

margaret graham building lot fourteen heritage details
margaret graham building lot fourteen office corridor

Creating a contemporary space within a heritage shell

The oldest of six heritage-listed buildings at Lot Fourteen, the Margaret Graham Building was completed in 1911 and once served as a Nurses’ Quarters.

As a significant heritage asset, it was imperative to retain the building’s unique character while also applying a contemporary lens over the design to create a modern working environment for the industry-leading tenants.

Perhaps the most significant heritage treatment was reserved for the upgrade of the feature staircase. The rich mahogany balustrade with cast iron detailing was revitalised, and the staircase upgraded with robust carpeted treads to support the office’s high levels of foot-traffic.

Feature elements such as skirting boards, intricate cornices, doors and frames, preserve the building’s rich history. Enhanced by soft hues of grey and white, the contemporary colour palette marries modernity with tradition in the subtlest of ways.

margaret graham building lot fourteen heritage staircase

Targeting a 6-Star Green Star Rating

In support of Renewal SA’s goal to achieve a 6-Star Green Star Communities Certification for the entire Lot Fourteen neighbourhood, our team implemented initiatives to create a sustainable construction environment.

The team introduced a bike-sharing scheme aimed at reducing their collective carbon footprint, while also aiming to exceed the Green Star benchmark for minimisation of waste during construction with the adaptive reuse of the heritage structure. Retaining and restoring the building’s existing materials dramatically reduced the use of new materials and provided significant savings in the building’s embodied energy.

Client satisfaction despite construction challenges

The design brief also included an outdoor plant deck designed to accommodate collaborative and social interactions between staff. This rooftop space, however, posed several challenges during construction.

The client requested a number of design changes through the build to meet the needs of their tenants. As such, the mechanical design was updated to suit, which led to design changes for the plant deck to accommodate for increased size and compliance requirements. Four separate crane lifts were conducted to get the timber into the building, which required modification of the roof itself to ensure we could get the product into the space as required.

Matthew Rodbourn, Project Administrator

As a result, the increased mechanical services scope provided challenges meeting the strict completion deadlines. Understanding the requirement to meet client handover targets, our team proactively met with the mechanical engineer, mechanical contractor, and project carpenters to successfully coordinate the works by the original completion date.

“Considering the increased scope, this was a good outcome and the client was happy with the install methodology approach as well as the safety precautions applied,” explains Matthew.

margaret graham building lot fourteen construction
margaret graham building lot fourteen outdoor deck

Enhancing the existing asset

The building had been altered significantly since it was originally constructed, and many of these additions were demolished to open up the floor plan to create functional workspaces.

Our construction team facilitated the demolition of existing walls and flooring, as well as penetrating through old brickwork to allow for mechanical runs. The existing lift shaft was demolished, making way for a new one fitted with an integrated OPAL Lift Display to enhance the user experience.

By highlighting the past and injecting modern elements of design and technology, the refurbishment of the heritage-listed Margaret Graham Building exemplifies the value historic buildings can add to innovative neighbourhoods such as Lot Fourteen.

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