Te Kupenga | 155-163 Fanshawe St
06 October 2021
From petrol station to leading sustainable Green Star building
155-163 Fanshawe Street has been transformed into one of Aotearoa's stand out green building success stories
Name: Te Kupenga
What: Seven level office building
Where: 155-163 Fanshawe Street
Locality: Adjacent to Victoria Park, it marks the entrance to Auckland’s waterfront neighbourhood Wynyard Quarter
The name of the building: Te Kupenga means fishing net in te reo Māori. The building pays homage to the
historical significance of the whenua, the ground where the new building sits, which was a busy fishing hub and place of trade in the 1800s
Leasable office space: 15,500 square metres
Tenants: Kiwibank, Trade Me, Southern Cross, Genesis Energy, NTT and Regus
Occupancy: 1100-1200 people per day
Owner: Developed by Auckland-based Mansons TCLM Ltd; sold to Singaporean Pension Fund, CC Neikea Trust Pte. Ltd, October 2020
Service engineer: Agile Engineering Consultants
Main contractor: Mansons TCLM Ltd
GSAP: Peter Bryant, SEEC Ltd
Project status: Initial designs and concept late 2016: completed late 2020
Project certification: 6 Green Star Office Design (October 2019) |6 Green Star Office Built (August 2021)
Built on the former site of a Caltex service station in central Auckland, the seven-level commercial building Te Kupenga breathes sustainability top to bottom. The building's rooftop is equipped with solar panels and rainwater harvesting, while the petrol pumps of the past have been replaced with a basement hosting 10 rapid charging docks for electric vehicles, 106 bike parks, and ultra-modern end of trip facilities.
With its orientation and form focused on bringing the outside environment indoors alongside state-of-the-art building services, Te Kupenga is a green exemplar for the commercial property sector.
It comes as no surprise that the building has been awarded a ‘world leadership’ 6 Green Star rating.
Auckland-based property company Mansons TCLM who developed Te Kupenga - from site acquisition through to construction and full completion - is seen as a trailblazer for green building in New Zealand.
Renowned for its leadership in the sustainable sphere it built the first Green Star certified building in New Zealand. Its currently portfolio of 15 to 20 properties are Green Star rated or in the process of being certified.
Mansons TCLM project manager Paul Wilkinson says the project's 6 Green Star rating is a milestone.
“The construction of a 6 Green Star rated building on an ex petrol station site is a significant achievement that we are extremely proud of. 6 Green Stars is a first for us as a company and has set a high benchmark which we will now target in our future developments.”
He says a 6 Green Star rating was the goal from the outset of the Te Kupenga project and he believes its combination of sustainable elements has delivered a world class rating.
That amalgamation of sustainable elements has been centre stage for Architectus project principal, Severin Soder and project architect, Kirk Smith who spearheaded the design of Te Kupenga.
The property is accessed off Wynyard Quarter’s Green Axis Daldy Street Linear Park and integrates a raft of green features including an elevated ‘park room’ at level 1, a substantial atrium with stairs and bridges and views to Victoria Park providing increased daylight to central areas of the building, large-scale efficient floor plates, skylights, and multiple slab projections and overhanging storeys providing a self-shading façade.
Severin says sustainability is multi-faceted with the completed building more than the sum of its parts.
“Spatially the atrium is one of the exciting aspects – it is complex, the views change as one moves around, the outlook to Victoria Park changes with the seasons. It is an uplifting environment which we envisaged as the heart of the building,” Severin says.
For project architect Kirk Smith, it was important to create an environment of connectivity.
“Connecting the occupants to each other via the atrium and inter-tenancy stairs -which reduces reliance on lifts. Connecting the occupants to the external environment, the park and the city, and connecting passers-by to those inside by allowing views into the building,” says Kirk.
Project GSAP and SEEC Ltd director, Peter Bryant says an outstanding design and construction team and a committed client was integral to Te Kupenga’s 6 Green Star certification.
He says, the indoor environment quality features including excellent daylight levels, external views and increased outdoor rates results in a healthy, comfortable and productive workplace for building occupants.
"Its high-performance façade and efficient building systems (including the photovoltaic array) are well positioned to deliver energy savings," Peter says.
Agile Engineering Consultants Director Alan Maharaj says Te Kupenga required innovative engineering solutions to ensure a balance between energy efficiency, system performance and user comfort.
“We are very proud of the 6 Green Star result. The building’s energy footprint has been reduced by 40 to 50 percent when compared to a similar-sized ordinary commercial building.”
He says the upshot is enhanced thermal insulation and a high-performance building envelope which makes it more comfortable for occupants and uses less energy.
Energy consumption is something of a talking point at Te Kupenga where a digital dashboard in the foyer displays real-time power and water usage.
Designed to educate and create awareness for occupants the use of the display was awarded a Green Star innovation point during certification. So far it's proved a useful way of keeping sustainability front of mind with tenants.
“It’s pretty cool to see the building living and breathing in such a way and it’s a great reminder of our responsibility as a tenant as to how we impact the utilities being consumed. It fits nicely with our overall ESG [Environmental, Social, and Governance] agenda and ensures we’re making a strong contribution towards climate change,” says Vicki Caisley, Southern Cross Chief People & Strategy Officer.
While the real-time dashboard tracks the data, it’s the people who work at Te Kupenga who gauge the real-time experience.
Vicki says the natural lighting flooding the building and the outlook over Victoria Park brings a sense of serenity and wellbeing to the workplace.
"It allows us to feel relaxed and at peace in our environment as we go about our day to day work.”
“The Southern Cross Health Society has a really lofty ambition to be one of the healthiest workplaces in Aotearoa - which is why having a building with the fantastic green features that Te Kupenga has is so important for us.”
Level 3 tenant Kiwibank says natural light, the connection to Victoria Park, the visibility of the park’s trees and wood panelling contributes to a sense of wellbeing and happiness in the building.
“There definitely is a sense that this is a high functioning office and features like the rainwater usage, low VOC [Volatile organic compounds] and connection to nature can definitely be felt,” says Kiwibank, Head of Sustainability, Julia Jackson.
Inspired by its 6 Green Star rating Kiwibank last year created a sign for its new corporate headquarters in Te Kupenga using 11,000 recycled single-use plastic bottles.
And Te Kupenga has inspired in other ways.
For tenant Genesis Energy the move into the 6 Green Star rated premises has triggered a rethink of workforce transport initiatives.
“The move provided the catalyst to introduce initiatives that would reduce emissions, traffic congestion and enable active and shared travel,” Genesis Energy Limited said in its 2021 Annual Report /te pūrongo ā-tau 2021.
As part of its relocation to Te Kupenga it no longer provides staff carparks, has removed company cars from salary packages and replaced its corporate car fleet with an EV car sharing start-up.
The energy company now offers its team a 25 percent subsidy for public transport, car-pool hubs in South and West Auckland, a free shuttle service from the eastern suburbs and Te Kupenga’s fantastic changing facilities encourage staff to ride, run or walk to work.
"Compared to the travel routines in our previous offices which had 205 carparks, we’ve seen a 50% increase in people taking public transport or using EVs, 102% increase in biking, running, walking or e-scootering to work, 81% of staff have signed up to the public transport subsidy and there are 984 less carbon contributing trips each week (petrol, diesel, motorbike), a reduction of 71%. Staff have collectively reduced carbon emissions by 158t per annum, so far"
Meanwhile Mansons TCLM project manager Paul Wilkinson says the value of a Green Star certification is immeasurable.
“Green Star is absolutely vital for the industry now and going forward. Often the first request we have from both purchasers and tenants is ‘What is the Green Star rating of this property?’”
“Te Kupenga’s 6 Green Star rating has been a huge drawcard for both its tenants and the eventual purchaser. Achieving a 6 Green Star rating enables us to be considered alongside very few others in New Zealand.”
Green features include:
Technical features include: