5 Martin Place by JPW and TKD architects in collaboration
Heritage: National Award
Australian Institute of Architects
The 1916 Commonwealth Bank building at 5 Martin Place is perhaps best remembered as the Money Box Building. The redevelopment strategy for this project clearly recognizes the value of the original architecture while concealing the later and less-than-considerate 1960s extension. A number of complex manoeuvres are at play in this project, which combines commercial and retail uses in both the original and new extensions. Most notable, though, is the rather polite but successful ten-storey extension that is discreetly cantilevered over the top of the original building, minimizing any interruption to the original building fabric. Under the cantilever the original light well has been opened up to provide a light-filled atrium connecting the commercial office floors through visual activation. The new interiors are respectful to the original architecture, evoking a sense of nostalgia, and sensitivity is evident throughout, with functional planning allowing many original rooms and the banking chambers to be retained. This project demonstrates the significant measurable benefits of heritage retention associated with commercial renewal.