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SA Government signs up for Conservatory

The South Australian Department of Trade and Economic Development has leased the commercial component of Adelaide's newest "green" building – the $70 million Conservatory on Hindmarsh Square development.

DTED has taken all 4,000 square metres of office space spread over five levels of the mixed use building.

Details of the long-term lease – negotiated over several months by CB Richard Ellis Director of Office Services, Andrew Bahr – have not been disclosed.

The 19-level building comprises ground floor retail space, four floors of above-ground parking and five of high-quality office space, with luxury apartments offering views across Adelaide on the top nine levels.

The project earned Major Project status from the South Australian Government because of its environmental credentials and ability to act as a benchmark for future residential and office projects across Australia.

"The Government recognised the merits of this leading edge environmentally sustainable building very early in its development," Mr Bahr said. "Its location, floor plates and the overall size of the space available obviously made it a sound choice for DTED from a commercial perspective while the environmental advantages and the significantly lower ongoing running costs are also aligned with the Government's major commitment to economic and environmental sustainability."

The Conservatory on Hindmarsh Square has been billed as one of Australia's most environmentally advanced residential and office towers, boasting an array of green design features such as on-site power generation via a unique solar-cell spine and from an on-site gas micro-turbine. Other environmental initiatives include performance glazing, energy efficient elevators, air conditioning and lighting systems, a built-in recycling system, a selection of finishes to provide superior indoor environment quality, and rainwater collection and re-use.

The Conservatory has been designed to achieve a high greenhouse rating and will be accredited under Nabers energy rating system in operation. In conjunction with the office rating, green targets for the residential component of the building include a 50 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, a 51 per cent cut in water use and a 50 per cent reduction in energy use.

Given the mixed use nature of the building, the Green Star rating cannot be formally certified, however the actual performance targets on track to be achieved will establish Conservatory as one of the "greenest" buildings of its type in Australia.

Development spokesperson, Hines Property Director James Hines said the Conservatory on Hindmarsh provided strong proof of the emerging commercial imperative of adopting an environmentally sustainable approach to design and construction.

"A building such as Conservatory can cost up to 20 per cent more to build because of the environmentally sustainable principles and the cost of the technology at its core," he said. "However, the ongoing savings on running costs – and the significant environmental benefits – have ensured the leasing and sales success of the project.

He said approximately 90 per cent of the apartments in Conservatory on Hindmarsh had already been sold off the plan, with only six apartments remaining for sale four months ahead of project completion.

"The crane has recently come down and the building is now visibly nearing completion which has contributed to significant further interest from people waiting to see what would be delivered. This has definitely assisted further apartment sales since the start of this year," Mr Hines said.

The apartments have larger living areas and a higher standard of finish and inclusions than most city apartments and are equipped with energy and water-efficient appliances, double-glazed windows, extensive cross-ventilation and energy-efficient lighting.

The building – being constructed by Bovis Lend Lease - is due for completion in July, and DTED is set to move from its current home at Terrace Towers on North Terrace during the second half of the year.