347 Kent St, NSW

CORE was engaged to deliver remedial facade advice pertaining to both heritage and non-heritage areas of 347 Kent St, a commercial building located within the vibrant YCK (York, Clarence and Kent St) Precinct of Sydney CBD.

Timeline

6 months – remedial specification

12 months – construction 

Facade remediation is an art form – requiring careful balance between the rectification of issues and maintenance of a building’s unique character.

Project Deliverables:

  • Full facade inspection
  • Defect mapping
  • Delivery of remedial specification 
  • Quantifying final material quantities for tender

Defects associated with the facade primarily involved lead paint deterioration and cracking of the blockwork.

The facade inspection was conducted via ropes and supported by a panoramic camera head to deliver high-resolution photos from ground level.

Determination of final tender quantities for each of the remedial items within the specification proved challenging. As the remedial project was to be tendered out as a lump sum package of works, our team had to exercise a degree of caution in the final specification values; overestimating would see the project costs escalate whilst underestimating would result in an underquoting of works.

Structural – Awning Safety Inspections & Certification

Council Crack Down On Awning Safety

Following a tragic incident that occurred at Sydney’s Northern Beaches some years back, Councils have continued to crack down on ageing, unsafe awnings by implementing a ‘Awning Safety Program’ to addresses their potential failure or collapse.

The program has seen a significant number of Council notices issued to business owners, instructing them to have their street front awnings inspected and assessed by a registered professional engineer as a matter of urgency. Following the inspection, the engineer is required to submit a 5-year safety certificate certifying the structural integrity and safety of the awning.

Our Expertise

As a result, our team has recently seen an influx in Council stipulated requests and is providing this service to an array of clients – having recently completed awning assessments to 80 awnings for the City of Sydney.

CORE Consulting Engineers is a multi-disciplinary firm armed with the knowledge and expertise of the industry’s leading engineers. For more than 20 years, our team has delivered outstanding, 360°engineering solutions to a range of clients across all major property sectors Australia-wide.

An awning’s age along with recent weather conditions are some contributing factors to structural failures and can pose a significant public safety risk.


Awning inspections include a condition assessment and are then followed by a structural assessment to confirm the awnings are compliant for gravity, imposed and wind loadings. Sometimes, awnings need to be strengthened to comply with current codes of practise.

Having your awning inspected and assessed by a RegisteredProfessional Structural Engineer is critical to confirming that there are no underlying safety issues.

Typically, Councils require awnings to be reassessed every 5 years.

Key Process Stages

  1. Where an awning is a closed structure, we undertake opening up works with the contractor, typically by lifting roof sheets at key locations to facilitate visual inspection of the internal framing to assess condition and measure up the members. CORE can engage a contractor to conduct opening up works under CORE’s direction and also facilitate access to the awning roof.
  2. We then conduct a risk assessment of the awning to establish whether an awning can be accessed by the public, either via openable windows above the awning, from adjacent accessible awnings, by ladders from ground level or other means such as adjacent structures.
  3. Awnings can be subject to high imposed loads due to unauthorised access by the public, such as the ‘Black Lives Matter’ protest in July 2021, when a large number of people climbed onto the Woolworths Building awning.
    Australian Standards require varying application of imposed loading to an awning depending on its access risk level.
  4. CORE then undertake a condition assessment and structural loading assessment to ascertain if any remedial works or strengthening works are required to achieve structural adequacy for load compliance and also ensure the awning is structurally sound.

If an awning is determined to be structurally adequate and does not require major repair, we will provide a structural certificate, valid for 3 to 5 years. Where strengthening or major remedial works are required, we can assist with the design and specification of any upgrade works before CORE undertake a final inspection and then provide final certification.

Electrical – Switchboard Reviews & Upgrades

Our Expertise

CORE has been delivering switchboard upgrade consultancy services for an array of long-term partner portfolios such as: City of Sydney, MBM, Investa and AMP Capital and has also supported electrical upgrades for a broad host of clients across several industries and sectors.

Our team has extensive technical experience and an intimate understanding of the integration between the main switchboard (MSB) and other interfacing electrical elements and building services. Known for our expertise in existing buildings, our team have successfully implemented MSB upgrades for buildings of various ages and at different stages of their lifecycle for compliance and capacity purposes.

Our approach to all MSB upgrades is to ensure our recommendations align with future building plans, seeing us offer long-term value and MSB solutions that support each asset’s requirements for years to come.

Imperative to providing our clients with customised and cost-efficient solutions, CORE has developed a strong understanding of the extensive MSB and distribution board market and its suppliers.

From evaluating your building’s requirements through to sourcing optimal equipment and managing upgrade works all the way to completion, our engineers deliver a robust solution to switchboard upgrades.

Some of our most recent switchboard upgrades include:

  • Coronation Hotel – Park St, Sydney
  • 9 The Crescent – Annandale, Sydney
  • Bay St Depot – Ultimo, Sydney
  • Victoria Park Pool – Camperdown, Sydney
  • SDN Surry Hills Long Day Care Centre – Surry Hills, Sydney
  • Reginald Murphy Activity Club – Elizabeth Bay, Sydney
  • Rex Community Centre – Elizabeth Bay, Sydney


MSB impact on building safety and performance…

It’s important to know the age and condition of your main switchboard along with any supplementary distribution boards powering your building to ensure they comply with current BCA standards.

Non-compliant MSBs can restrict accessibility, limit the ability to carry out maintenance services and can also pose a significant safety hazard to users – carrying serious risks such as electrocution, particularly when the expected lifespan for circuit breakers is reached or close to expiry.

Switchboards that are newer to the market are equipped with ‘earth leakage detection’ safety mechanisms, enabling minor current leaks to be detected and trapping the circuit immediately.

When not upgraded, the MSB can also damage cables and other distribution boards having a costly, flow-on effect to other electrical components and in turn, impacting a building’s overall performance – an issue that can be managed and avoided.

When was your building’s last switchboard review?

It is recommended that an electrical assessment, visual inspection and subsequent report be completed every 5 years. This is especially important prior to any building services upgrades/maintenance being implemented as the impact on the MSB must be considered.

Approximately a 1-day engagement for inspection and reporting, CORE conducts visual evaluations of an asset’s electricals including but not limited to: power, lights and switchboards – evaluating their expected lifespan and notifying
Building Managers of all findings and any identified defects. A report is then provided, detailing item prioritisation and recommendations with indicative costs and information on whether further testing is needed to verify potential defects.

For what is a critical piece of infrastructure, that is often overlooked for inspection and maintenance, the switchboard inspection and testing process is a relatively quick, low-cost exercise that can prevent future faults or problems, and ensure your building and its people are well protected.

 

Investa: NSW, VIC, QLD Portfolio

Our Partnership

CORE has delivered facade auditing and fire consulting services for Investa’s NSW, VIC and QLD portfolio of 21 assets for more than 10 years.

As Investa’s base building consultants, our team has gained an intimate knowledge of each building as well as a strong understanding of the operational and compliance excellence expected of Investa’s suppliers, along with their key drivers of success.

Achieving 100% compliance with inspection and legislative requirements, codes and authorities.

Working in close collaboration with the Investa management team, and in accordance with all state requirements, CORE has successfully delivered a national program of facade inspections and management of identified defects achieving and maintaining 100% compliance with Investa’s inspection requirements.

Our development and management of Investa’s fire compliance and certification process has seen CORE create a bespoke model that is well above industry standard and is reflective of the unique service requirements of Investa. This model continues to strengthen and evolve as we aim to deliver an efficient, sustainable and customised fire consulting services for Investa for years to come.

The people behind the buildings…

Paramount to our partnership’s success is CORE and Investa’s mutual commitment to effective communication and nurturing relationships throughout all streams of engagement.

With dedicated Site Managers and State Managers assigned to each location, CORE facilitates a personal, consistent and streamlined communication experience for both parties an approach that is supported by our operational processes and systems.

We understand the importance and value of clear, accountable communication flows and believe this to be one of the most critical components of what we deliver.

Experts in existing buildings.

Heavily integrated with other major disciplines, facades and building services play a significant role in determining the overall value, performance, safety and sustainability of a building.

CORE’s multi-disciplinary teamwork means we differentiate in facade excellence – delivering continuous improvement and setting new benchmarks in the industry.

More than 70% of CORE’s business is in existing buildings.

Our team are experts in this field – acutely aware of the challenges and constraints that arise throughout the building lifecycle and equipped to provide solutions that minimise tenant disruption whilst offering the safest, most efficient
and cost-effective outcomes.

It is our choice to only work with select clients to manage their premium building portfolios via our bespoke methodology and boutique client service. This approach enables us to deliver and uphold a high-quality, turn-key solution that
encompasses both technical engineering and project management practises seeing us take on all administrative, technical and cost analysis responsibilities so that our clients can focus on servicing their tenants.

Being at the forefront of the industry for compliance management – we’re always keeping commercial and regulatory requirements top of mind and working closely with clients to navigate and deliver in alignment with the ever-changing
compliance environment.

City of Sydney, NSW Portfolio

Our Partnership

Since 2019, CORE has been proudly appointed by MBM as City of Sydney’s partner of choice for the delivery of multi- disciplinary, technical engineering services across a portfolio of 125 assets.

An array of prominent, flagship locations that shape the city of Sydney…

  • Town Halls
  • Aquatic Centres
  • Community Centres
  • Childcare Centres
  • Libraries
  • Leisure & Entertainment Venues
  • Commercial Offices
  • Industrial Warehouses

Experts in existing buildings, delivering turn-key, multi disciplinary engineering solutions.

Our dedicated CORE team are responsible for the provision of:

  • Technical due diligence investigations and reporting
  • Facade inspection services
  • Condition reporting
  • Feasibility studies
  • Design and specification
  • Construction services
  • Building safety upgrades
  • Fitouts / refurbishment projects
  • CAPEX projects
  • Certification

Leading with a ‘People-First’ approach and an unwavering commitment to operational excellence.

Operating as a true extension to the City of Sydney team, CORE places a strong focus on the simultaneous delivery of high-quality engineering and exceptional customer service.

Working with a diverse group of stakeholders – from Facilities Managers, engineering and project management divisions, the sustainability team, through to tenants themselves, we pride ourselves on delivering a customised approach
and handling each interaction with care.

Communication, flexibility, a high level of responsiveness and the commitment to addressing priority items with urgency are integral to our approach.

Managing the unique, ever-changing requirements of each asset, City of Sydney’s diverse portfolio has required an intimate understanding of existing buildings and their lifecycle, along with experience in navigating the sensitivities
and intricacies of government requirements.

In addition to governance and regulatory obligations, historic value, cost and sustainability requirements, risk management and impact on end-users are always carefully considered to ensure the delivery of exceptional engineering
solutions and long-term value for our client.

As we continue our work with City of Sydney, we look forward to increasing our knowledge of their buildings and seeing them flourish within the community.

Grafton Bond Building, 201A Kent Street, NSW

Having developed a strong relationship with Investa, delivering annual facade audits and risk mitigation recommendations for a portfolio of 30 buildings nationwide, CORE was engaged to prepare a remedial specification for the Grafton Bond Building at 201A Kent St in Sydney’s CBD. The impressive, 140-year-old heritage listed building was experiencing expected levels of deterioration to various facade elements for a building its age and required careful restoration to preserve its heritage value.

Timeline

6 months – remedial specification

12 months – construction

Passionate facade remediation experts: preserving buildings of the past to enrich communities of the future

Home to a diverse range of small businesses, the heritage restoration was highly complex, carried out in a live environment with extensive project planning required due to challenges with site access, working at heights and hazardous materials on site.

The pre-delivery stage was particularly critical to undergoing work outside of hours and reducing disruption/noise throughout the works.

The scope included:

  • Preliminaries and drawings
  • Window sealant works
  • Timber frame recoating and repair
  • Glazing putty repair
  • Parapet capping sealant works
  • Security bar works
  • Masonry repointing and crack stitching
  • Balustrade corrosion works
  • Cavity flashing works
  • Guttering works
  • Slate roof tile replacement

CORE’s strong understanding of the intricacies of heritage remediation combined with our team’s passion for sustainable and cost-efficient solutions has proudly seen the Grafton Bond Building’s facade restored to its full potential.

139 Dowling St, Woolloomooloo, NSW

Located in the beautiful suburb of Woolloomooloo, this commanding late-Victorian terrace was set to undergo a complete renovation and rear extension, transforming it into a unique commercial office space.

Timeline

20 months – design through to completed works.

Blending old with new to achieve heritage

Engaged by M.A.D Bespoke Property Group, CORE delivered a 360-degree, multi-disciplinary structural and building services solution for 139 Dowling St, Woolloomooloo.

One of the most impressive features of the project was the design of a custom, inter-tenancy steel staircase showcasing an industrial, warehouse-style finish, serving as a unique focal point within the overall design.

Structural framing for the building’s flooring and rear facade was also designed in-house and utilised as much of the existing structure and framing as possible, resulting in a cost-effective solution that preserved the building’s heritage, achieved architectural intent and delivered the functionality and aesthetic of modern day.

The project spanned 5 open plan levels with CORE’s fire, electrical and hydraulic teams engaged to provide all-encompassing building services design in support of the building’s renovation and extension.

Experts in existing buildings with a passion for heritage, CORE are proud to have completed another successful transformation.

9 Hunter St, Sydney, NSW

Located in the heart of the Sydney CBD, 9 Hunter St is a 17 level office tower with a multi-tenant profile situated above one of the city’s busiest food courts.

CORE was engaged in 2019 as part of plans to undertake a major refurbishment of the lobby area that would include upgrades and alterations to the commercial entry to the existing building, inclusion of a new accessible ramp, fire safety upgrades, shopfront and awning along with bespoke finishes to the foyer and lift lobby interiors such as the undulating ceiling, double-height glass façade and portal lighting.

The objective of the works was to enhance the environment and areas available for lease with cutting edge design, transforming the ground level of one of Sydney’s best situated office towers.

Timeline

6 months – design
12 months – construction

CORE – a partner of choice

As a multi-disciplinary consultancy, continuously adding value throughout the building’s lifecycle, CORE were well equipped to deliver an end-to-end project solution.

Over an 18-month period, our team in conjunction with our project partners delivered all major structural and building services works achieving significant aesthetic, functional, accessibility and safety improvements for tenants and staff alike.

Setting the building apart, one of the most impressive design features is the change from a single-height to a double-height facade which required the complete relocation of major services. Complemented by architecturally designed, undulating dowel with dowel and entry portal lighting designed by CORE, the lobby is the perfect example of design and functionality aligned.