Barwon Water HQ

GHD Woodhead

GHD Woodhead recently refurbished Barwon Water’s 50-year old Geelong office, transforming it into the greenest office in Geelong – Ryrie HQ. The upgrade transformed the building from 0.5 Star Green Star equivalent to 5 Star Green Star, and is an exemplar of how sustainable outcomes can be achieved through building redesign and refurbishment.

Historically Barwon Water’s Geelong staff were split across two major office locations located three kilometres apart. The physical separation of 300 staff was a challenge to staff effectiveness, efficiency and collaboration, as well as an inefficient use of resources.

The consolidation of office spaces presented an excellent opportunity to build an iconic, state-of-the-art sustainable building and contribute to the revitalisation of Geelong.

The result is a modern office building with outstanding sustainability credentials and staff health and wellbeing features. Ryrie HQ will be 80% more energy efficient than the previous buildings combined.

It features a high performance façade that eliminates 95% of direct sun penetration and has a state of the art heating, ventilation and cooling system. The building has spectacular north facing views over Corio Bay and a 300 square metre roof garden that provides urban greening and an exceptional outdoor space for staff. Other key green infrastructure features include two green walls and a rain garden at street level providing water treatment and aquatic biodiversity. The building will re-use rainwater for toilet flushing and irrigating the rain garden and green roof and walls.

The building also reconnects all ability access between Ryrie Street and the Arts and Library hub in Little Malop Street. Staff wellbeing has been greatly enhanced through open plan office layout, extensive natural lighting and views, multiple private and communal break out and meeting spaces, extensive bike parking and end of trip facilities.