Jubliee Place: 2022 Steel Excellence Award winner

Jubliee Place won the ASI’s 2022 Steel Excellence Award in the Queensland and NT Large Projects category.

The solution for this heavily constrained site, located over the Clem7 tunnels, delivered a building that provided almost 20% additional Nett Lettable Area. This was achieved by using structural steel in the form of composite columns, diagrid and composite floor beams. The construction staging was developed by the head contractor, Besix Watpac, and the fabricator, Beenleigh Steel Fabrications, to ensure that the construction methodology was accurately represented in the structural modelling. To build the first portion of the diagrid, the engineers devised a solution using two single-storey trusses on the internal column grids to support the 13m cantilever. The result is a combination of strength and pure elegance. 

The heritage-listed Jubilee Hotel, built in 1887, underwent preservation and refurbishment and now benefits from a protective arm over its shoulder in the form of a new 14 level commercial tower built on the corner site on St Paul’s Terrace in Fortitude Valley.

The commercial tower’s unique diagrid exoskeleton structure—the only one of its type in Brisbane and the tallest in Australia—was designed to lessen the impact on the Clem Jones Tunnel that lies just 11m directly beneath. The design also focused on improving the health and well being of its occupants. As a result, the building has achieved 6 star Green Star, 5 star NABERS and Gold WELL Building Standard accreditations.

The cantilever provides a canopy for a public plaza that links the hotel to the tower’s recessed lower levels, merging the old with the new in a bold and beautiful way. With a breathable glass louvred façade, sub-tropical rooftop garden, cycling club and a start-up hub providing a public interface for the building’s occupants, this building is fit for the workplace of the future.

Principal contractor Besix Watpac called upon Beenleigh Steel Fabrications, both SCA and ESC certified, to fabricate and erect over 3,600 tonnes of steelwork. A conventional reinforced concrete building would have exceeded the pressures of the Clem7 tunnel at its crown, making a composite steel building the obvious choice for the floor plate.

he building was designed to largely support itself during construction with the perimeter diagrid structure between levels four and five serving as a truss to launch the tower above. To achieve the required floor plate size, the tower cantilevers approximately 7.5m over the Jubilee Hotel.

At the heart of the Beenleigh Steel approach was the ongoing efficiency and sustainability of all processes throughout design and fabrication. By utilising their in-house software systems, all steel plates were algorithmically nested to dramatically reduce the net waste of steel.

The most complex aspect of the project was the fabrication and erection of the diagrid structure, although there were many other challenges throughout the project, including sophisticated pipe profiling for fabrication and custom designed and engineered lifting devices for erection purposes.

Project team

  • Entering Organisations: Robert Bird Group & Beenleigh Steel Fabrications
  • Architect: Blight Rayner
  • Structural Engineer: Robert Bird Group
  • Head Building Contractor: BESIX Watpac
  • Distributor or Manufacturer: Southern Queensland Steel, Lysaght
  • Steel Fabricators: Beenleigh Steel Fabrications
  • Steel Detailers: Cad Tech Australia
  • Coatings Supplier: Tranzblast

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