200 George Street

200 George Street

This finely crafted workplace buildings is onceived as a tower of wood that rests gently on its site to interpret, honour and represent the pre-European character and contours of this unique place. We have sought to create a different type of city tower; warm, human and responsive, to create a healthy and sustainable workplace. It is a building made of traditional materials, stone, wood and glass; material that we have been building with for thousands of years, but here unitising the most advanced technology systems.

We wanted to see if we could make a city tower grow out of its site, being the source of its inspiration, its material and character; and in doing so somehow reveal, interpret and reinforce this unique site and sense of place. The beautiful Yellow Block sandstone on which this City and our site rests was quarried and blocked, and was used to clad the core of the new tower, rising from the earth to form the spine of the new tower. Into this sandstone is carved a beautiful artwork by Aboriginal artist Judy Watson. It is a work deep in meaning and interpretation of the rich cultural history of the site.

The ground of the new building, kiosk and public space is formed in stone, curved and folded up to create steps, and a place to display the site’s archaeological findings from Sydney’s colonial and Victorian-era. A bronze line has been incised through the floor of the public domain and into the lobby, marking the edge of the water from the pre-European estuary. Forming a soft edge to the street and public foyer is a suspended awning of folded timber planes reaching out, protecting the footpath and reflecting light into the lobby interior. This gently curving and folding awning is like a row of trees providing shelter at the edge of the tank stream.

This tower creates work environments that are open, flexible, enabled and connected with its fully glazed floors, extensive natural lighting and integrated LED lighting system. Importantly the envelope is a responsive skin, a kinetic architecture, adjusting automatically to the position of the sun and time of day to control heat load and sky glare. This facade with progressively adjusting timber screen filters the light into a warm timber glow reaching deep into the interior.
From outside, the building changes in appearance as the sun moves, the western facade clear and open in the morning and more closed and timber in appearance in the afternoon. We have looked carefully at the history and great richness of this place and tried to both reveal and deepen it, despite the presence of a large building on a tight site in the heart of the city.

In this increasingly global context and the international city that Sydney is, this is a work of Australian Design; a collaboration of Australian architects, designers, consultants, artists, furniture designers and manufacturers, contractors and developers. We have tried to make our competing global city more desirable and competitive through making it more unique and true to itself.

Integrated Cultural Artworks
‘Ngarunga Nangama, Calm Water Dream’ Foyer Artwork by Judy Watson, developed in consultation with Gadigal Elder Uncle Allen Madden

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fjcstudio acknowledges all Aboriginal and Torres  Strait Islander peoples, the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we work.

We recognise their continuing connection to Country and pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging.

We extend this acknowledgement to Indigenous People globally, recognising their human rights and freedoms as articulated in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.