Architect HASSELL
Area 3680 sqm
Award IES Lighting Design Award of Commendation 2013, Brisbane Regional Awards 2015 Commendation: Architecture (Education) & Architecture (Interiors)
ESD Rating 6 Star GreenStar
Engineering advisory
Engineering design & documentation

The mechanical and electrical engineering design of the Global Change Institute is the proud achievement of our Brisbane team. This living, breathing beacon of sustainability uses zero net energy and is carbon neutral. Our team won the IES Lighting Design Award of Commendation 2013 for our fit for purpose, highly efficient LED lighting solution. GCI has achieved a 6 Star Green Star Education Design and As-Built Rating. In addition GCI is seeking certification under the Living Building Challenge, one of the first buildings in Australia to do so. The University of Qld’s Global Change Institute will provide the focus for the University’s leadership in new technologies for meeting the challenges of a changing world.

GCI is a naturally efficient performer due to the ingenuity of our three stage heat recovery, solar-driven air cooling system design – the first application of this system for an education building in a sub tropical environment.  Stage one is pre-cooling of the outside air using a sub-basement labyrinth system. Stage two is the bio-filtration of the return air, which is passed through a Green Wall feature in the atrium. And, stage three is the hydronic cooling of the Geopolymer concrete floor panels using R290 refrigerant gas-chilled water. Our three stage system integrates with the operable louvered facade design, which tracks the sun to encourage the most advantageous natural ventilation. The air flows across the interior of spaces to the central atrium, which discharges warm air through its thermal chimney, much like a pair of lungs. Working together, the ventilation system achieves an internal temperature range from 21 to 28 degrees Celsius – throughout the annual climate cycle at the UofQ’s St Lucia

The Building Management System drives the automated window louvers, natural ventilation, comfort cooling, solar array, battery power storage and eco power outlets, whilst also gathering data for ongoing building management research.   

Winner of the IES Lighting Design Award of Commendation 2013.

The lighting at GCI plays a pivotal role in the architectural appearance of the building and reflects the sustainable, highly efficient and innovative character of the building. Meticulously coordinated with the architectural elements, the lighting design is tailored to suit both architectural features and practical usage of each space. The lighting enhances the heritage values of the adjacent existing building. The design is aimed to provide a fully-integrated solution that is unique to the context of the building.

The Global Change Institute has also attained the following awards and commendations:

  • 2015 AIA National Awards. David Oppenheim Award for Sustainable Architecture.
  • 2015 AIA National Awards. Award for Interior Architecture.
  • 2015 QLD State Awards. G.H.M Addison Award for Interior Architecture.
  • 2015QLD State Awards. Harry Marks Award for Sustainable Architecture.
  • 2015 QLD State Awards. R.G Suter Award for Educational Architecture.
  • 2015 QLD Architecture Awards. Brisbane Regional Commendation. Interior Architecture.
  • 2015 QLD Architecture Awards. Brisbane Regional Commendation. Educational Architecture.
  • 2014 ASI Queensland and Northern Territory Steel Excellence Award for Buildings-Large projects.
  • 2014 ASI National Steel Excellence Award for Buildings-Large projects
  • BPN 2014 Sustainability Awards. Public Building Winner.
  • BPN2014 Sustainability Awards for Innovation. Geoplolymer Concrete.
  • Finalist in the AIRAH 2012 Awards of Excellence for the mechanical solar cooling.

The University is  seeking accreditation through the Living Building challenge. If successful, the Global Change Institute will join the handful of buildings around the world that meet this standard.