Aurecon was commissioned to provide sustainable development guidance to the 44 on Grand Central project team and to manage the achievement of a 4-Star Green Star SA – Office Design v1 rating from the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA) for this project. The client was South Africa’s largest listed property company, Growthpoint Properties.

The elegant, high quality 7 000 m² development is located immediately opposite the Gautrain’s Midrand Station. Two major challenges were encountered on the 44 on Grand Central project: that of a sloped site, calling for an innovative building circulation model, and the need to implement Environmentally Sustainable Design (ESD) to the highest standards, despite minimal site space.

The design of 44 on Grand Central uses a unique circulation model to accommodate a steep slope from south-east to north-west, with the south-east low point being close to Gautrain Station. The circulation model was thoroughly modelled using Aurecon’s energy and daylight modelling expertise, while the choice of glazing, as well as design of glare reduction features, was also optimised to ensure the maximum penetration of light as well as the comfort of building users. All aspects of the design were carefully scrutinised and assessed for their cost-effective contribution to the targeted Green Star rating.

Some of the innovative green aspects introduced by the mechanical engineers on the project included maximising comfort and ensuring a healthy environment for the occupants through the specification of a high fresh air ratio HVAC system, linked to fresh air fans on the roof.

Completed on time and on budget after a 12-month construction schedule, 44 on Grand Central has been occupied since June 2013. The tenant feedback has been extremely positive. In addition to the high standard of operational efficiency achieved, the attention paid to external infrastructure and landscaping is expected to be catalyst for further development in Midrand’s attractive commercial node.

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