Waste Management Auckland Head Office
23 August 2022
An energy-smart office building, state-of-the-art truck maintenance workshops, best practice operations and an innovative staff hub cultivating team culture - Waste Management’s 5 Green Star rated headquarters delivers excellence every step of the way
Name: Waste Management Auckland Head Office
What: 9100m2 purpose-built mixed-use facility accommodating corporate and operational activities
Details: double-storey office building with large atrium and centralised feature staircase; staff amenities hub with café/lunch room/training rooms/end of trip facilities (centrally located and shared by all workers across the site); industrial workshops with engineering and maintenance services for the company’s trucks, bins and skips, vehicle and receptacle storage, washdown zone and Aotearoa’s first electric truck conversion station known as the EV Innovation Hub
EV update: 28 fully electric trucks, 19 conversions in the pipeline, 22 conversions planned in 2023 and ongoing. Data shows one electric truck saves on average 125 litres of diesel per day
Owner: Industre Property (Stride Property Ltd / JP Morgan joint venture)
Tenant: Waste Management Ltd - Aotearoa’s leading materials recovery, recycling and waste management provider. Initial 25 year lease with right of renewal
Occupancy : approximately 450 staff
Parking capacity: 140 trucks and 435 cars
Site specifics: 5.4 hectares
Address: 11 Springs Road, East Tāmaki, Auckland
Architect: Jasmax (office building, the Hub, interior fit-out of operations office area) Eclipse Architecture (industrial workshop facilities)
Main contractor: Haydn & Rollett Construction
GSAP: Joe Quad, Cosgroves
Project management: RDT Pacific
Project status: design phase November 2017; construction October 2018 to December 2019; occupancy December 2019
Project certification: 5 Green Star Design & As Built Built rating (April 2022)
Awards: Property Council New Zealand awards:
2020 Supreme Award
2020 Green Building Property Award (Best in Category) 2020 Industrial Property Awards (Best in Category)
2020 Commercial Office Property Award (Excellence)
When Waste Management made a decision to relocate its multi-site Auckland business to a purpose-built facility at East Tāmaki, ‘same old, same old’ was never part of the design and build a narrative.
An industry leader in sustainability, Waste Management was the first waste company in Aotearoa to action an Emissions Reduction Plan, the first to gain Toitū Carbonreduce certification and the first to meet the NZGBC’s Green Star Construction & Demolition Waste Reporting Criteria.
Not surprisingly, the development of its new single site facility was an opportunity to deliver bespoke high-performance buildings and a truly special and sustainable HQ for the Auckland team.
From the outset owner and developer of the location Stride Property Ltd (Stride) was a collaborative force in the project.
“As a business with sustainability at its core we were fully invested in this world-class headquarters from the start and we are incredibly proud of the outcome,” says Stride CEO Philip Littlewood.
Stride’s strategy is to design, develop and invest in a portfolio of locations and facilities which feature enduring demand. Industrial facilities that meet contemporary requirements for a broad range of occupants forms a key part of the strategy. With a current portfolio of some $850m, the Industre Fund is committed to greening its existing portfolio including designing and building to green standards in future.
“Sustainable buildings not only create tenant amenity and enhanced occupant well-being, but they will also increasingly become a market expectation and component of enduring demand,” says Allan Lockie, Senior Development Manager at Stride.
With Waste Management’s operations previously spread across Tāmaki Makaurau, its new headquarters brings together both corporate and operational facilities, servicing the Auckland market as well as overseeing its national network.
Waste Management GM strategy, customers and sustainability, Ingrid Cronin- Knight, says climate change and achieving carbon zero have to be the focus for Aotearoa. Waste Management is working hard toward a low-carbon future, and its ethos is in tandem with the NZGBC.
“Green Star certification supports our sustainable strategy For Future Generations – with reduced greenhouse gas emissions during the build process and operation. It also demonstrates we walk the talk. Achieving a Green Star rating is a challenge. It takes money, time, effort and resources. We wanted to show our team, customers and stakeholders that we’re prepared to put in the work to be sustainable,” Ingrid says.
As well as verifying that buildings meet the highest modern sustainability standards, Waste Management says Green Star brings future-proofing into focus.
“Green Star helped us think about longevity. The design of our facility is simple and generous, allowing for future adaptability and flexibility. A good example is a space we have set aside for more EV chargers to cater for our growing electric fleet.”
In-ground ductwork has the capacity to provide future EV charging for over 100 light vehicles and over 50 trucks.
Collaboration was key to the successful 5-star rating. Initial meetings included not only Stride and Waste Management but all stakeholders, from electricians and gardeners to designers and architects.
“Everyone shared the same vision and the determination to make it happen.”
RDT Pacific director and chair of the NZGBC Green Star Advisory Committee, Simon Wilson, says Waste Management’s collaborative success story was propelled by three factors:
- social architecture - the design of an environment that encourages a raft of desired social behaviours leading toward set goals
- a Development Agreement between owner and tenant based on an open partnership model
- Integrated Design Process or IDP – a design approach (commonly used in the USA to deliver green buildings faster, better and cheaper) aligning the whole team around what is important than helping them leave their ‘silos of expertise and empowering them as project co-designers by focusing on shared stretch goals and outcomes.
"This project was about collaboration in action, and the integrated design process was used to develop a design that enabled the full potential for the end user to be realised. This is a very powerful process but not used enough in Aotearoa,” Simon says.
Jasmax Sustainability Manager and Associate Principal, Jerome Partington facilitated the project’s Integrated Design Process. He says it offered clear direction and everyone involved was able to openly contribute to the project’s success.
“Rather than adding and subtracting elements in sync with cost savings, the building and its construction were designed like a Swiss watch for optimal performance and delivery against all drivers and constraints.”
Jasmax Senior Architectural Technician and Senior Associate Anton Saunders say all design decision-making prioritised safety, comfort, sustainability and opportunities for connection in an uplifting environment.
He says highlights of the office building include high-performance glazing, a central atrium and south-facing clerestory windows that maximise daylight, a highly insulated thermo-mass concrete façade, and an energy-efficient HVAC system.
“Green Star has helped shape a comfortable, healthy and green environment for the Waste Management team that allows them to work towards their net-zero carbon goals while providing an amazing space to work in.”
Eclipse Architecture associate and architect, Sean Sanderson, says the focus for industrial areas was using materials with a long lifespan and low volatile organic compounds (VOC). The key design element of the roof ensures appropriate acoustic separation with good natural daylight.
“Along with green building elements, the key design objective throughout the workshops was providing safe, efficient, current best practice work environments,” he says.
“Care was taken to elevate the design of relatively mundane work areas to show operations staff they were valued and that the workshops were the same high-quality design and finish as the main office building.”
Similar materials were used throughout all buildings with precast concrete finishes consistent between the office block, workshops and truck and bin wash building.
Project GSAP and Cosgroves associate – sustainability and mechanical, Joe Quad, says receiving a 5 Green Star rating came down to a commitment by the client and design team
“It is easy to put things in the too-hard category as challenges come up along the way, but keeping sight of the target holds everyone accountable for overcoming those challenges,” he says.
Waste Management says Green Star has delivered multiple benefits to the company’s dynamic East Tāmaki premises.
“Our team loves it, and we’re all proud of where we work and how sustainable the entire site is,” says Ingrid Cronin- Knight.
“Previously, our corporate and operations teams were quite separate, but that’s all changed. Now our diverse staff - engineers, accountants, drivers, sales team members, mechanics, IT specialists and many more are based in the same facility, and we all come together for breaks and mealtimes within our central hub. That’s been great for our culture. We all understand each other’s roles a little better, and there’s great comradery.”
Waste Management says it will target 5 Green Star certifications for all its future builds.
“We hope we can serve as a good example to others within our industry and beyond of what is achievable.”
Waste Management's lead sustainability partner, Tyron Hartle, is proud to know the level of care and detail that went into creating a fantastic place to work.
“The open plan spaces, large windows, green walls, acoustics and natural light really help with your wellbeing. I appreciate the fact I can access all of our teams, and if I need to talk with operations, I just walk downstairs. There is real collaboration and connection on this site,” he says.
“Seeing the massive living green walls as we walk into the building is a great way to start the day,” says Waste Management customer service supervisor, Carnie Ezekiela.
“It’s such a comfortable place to work, and the good airflow has been important during COVID. My team all enjoy being able to see our colleagues who work in different areas of the business. For example, we can see into the truck workshop from large windows near our training room which helps us understand all the parts of the business a little better and means we really feel the Waste Management value of together.”
“I think the 5 Green Star rating shows how much we value sustainability at Waste Management and the direction we are heading in.”
Green features include:
Technical features include: