22 Oct, 2018 | Written by Premis

Commercial Buildings: Blending Old With New

In today’s modern cities, an increasing appetite for new residential and commercial development is placing pressure on the preservation of our urban heritage buildings. 

In the past, older buildings were often demolished or routinely modernised to remove any historical features.  To retain a city’s identity, it’s important to preserve its heritage architecture, and this type of refurbishment is now being positively embraced by most councils and residents.

Many new buildings are now being designed with their historical surrounds in mind, giving heritage buildings room to “breathe” by not blocking them visually, resulting in an updated urban streetscape that embraces its past – and future.  Heritage buildings are increasingly being repurposed for modern use, mixing original architectural elements with contemporary features – breathing new life into these older structures.

Taking Inspiration From Heritage Neighbours

Premis recently delivered a three-stage build project at St Columba’s Primary School in Wilston, which included the construction of a new two-storey building housing the school’s administration as well as new classrooms and amenities.

In designing the building, ABM Architects wanted the new construction to fit well within the existing surroundings and to reflect a modern, classical style that gave the school more of a presence.  The architects drew inspiration for the design from the neighbouring heritage listed Catholic Church and Our Lady’s Block, while also being sensitive and respectful to these older buildings. 

The Premis team worked closely with ABM Architects to ensure that the construction program ran smoothly, and the results speak for themselves.

Adaptive Reuse Of a 19th Century Building

Premis was engaged to deliver a creative, comfortable and efficient fitout for the Brisbane Festival team at their Festival House headquarters.  The Festival House building was constructed in 1890 as a tobacco factory, with clothing manufacturers Walker and Harris occupying the building from 1902.  In 1988, the building was redeveloped by Arts Queensland to provide a base for a number of different arts bodies.

In creating the new space for the Brisbane Festival team, an essential element involved balancing the original features of the building with the modern work environment required.

Premis added an operable wall to enhance a multi-use of space for conference meetings and break out areas.  Another aspect of the refurbishment was to expose the timber ceiling beams – creating a stark and effective juxtaposition with the otherwise clean, sleek and modern fitout.

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