Transurban builds and operates transport infrastructure, which is critical to the growth of cities across Australia and the US. That connection to the urban environment is evident as soon as you enter its Melbourne workplace.

After having successfully delivered their last workplace in 2015 – two floors in Tower Two of the Collins Square Precinct in Melbourne’s Docklands – Hassell again partnered with Transurban to move them into eight floors of the precincts newly built Tower Five.

Like the cities the company supports, their workplace is stimulating in some spots, and calm in others. Public and multi-connected in certain areas, yet offering isolation and solitude too.

Like a ‘city’ to explore – as soon as you arrive

The company’s arrival area on level 31 is functional and down-to-earth. The planked, reflective ceiling and bluestone paving give it a civic quality, similar to an urban plaza.

On arrival, it is immediately evident that technology plays an important role in Transurban’s day-to-day business. Guests are met with impressive floor to ceiling screens, which can display anything from a tranquil underwater scene to any one of Transurban’s busy road networks. Everything the staff does is enhanced by technology, and this is apparent as you move around the workplace.

Freestanding meeting ‘pavilions’ with curved glass walls create winding pathways that encourage visitors and employees to explore the whole floor.

A hard-working space to gather in every day

A dramatically lit, circular void on the entry level connects to a bustling staff hub one level below.

With a vaulted timber ceiling, blackened steel railings and more paved floors, the hub is a practical, durable space for both heavy, everyday use and large special events.

Over time, wear and tear will give the surfaces there a distinct patina, only magnifying its ‘lived in’ appeal.

Voids and portholes break barriers between floors

All the typical work floors connect via stairs that punch through generous circular voids. These staggered voids offer dynamic views both vertically and across the floors.

Smaller ‘portholes’ also give surprising glimpses between floors, heightening moments of connection and discovery within the workplace.

Diversity of work styles to reflect the diversity of our cities

A strong community feel is created through collaboration zones. Like popular hangout spots or city squares, these zones are full of people and buzzing with energy. Situated on raised platforms to highlight their importance within the space, the collaboration zones are also the landing space of the cascading stairs that punch through the levels, a deliberate positioning choice to increase interaction between staff and strengthen connections.

Like a city’s parks and gardens, plants throughout the offices balance out the more ‘built-up’ zones. Greenery features in unexpected ways, such as in the striking clusters of hanging pots or trees nestled in circular beds cut into the floors.

Transurban’s workplace represents a distinct shift away from more traditional corporate design toward a space with an authentic and tangible connection to the company’s purpose and place in society.

Project: Transurban Workplace, Melbourne
Design Studio: Hassell
Photo Credit: Tom Blachford