The Britomart East and Westpac Customs Charter House project involved the refurbishment of an historic building, construction of a new 12 storey office building and the integration of these two elements. Holmes Fire was involved throughout the 5 year period from initial design concepts to full construction review, on-site commissioning and testing of smoke control systems and evacuation drills.
Our team of experienced engineers prepared the fire engineering design for the entire project in five main parts:
- Base building Fire Engineering design for the historic building and new extensions;
- Applying innovative fire engineering to accommodate the tenant’s aspirations in an integrated fitout;
- Base building Fire Engineering design for the new adjacent 12 storey building, including links to the historic building;
- Integrated fitout fire design for the new building major tenant allowing for interconnecting stairs linking all office levels as well as optimisation of tenant staff numbers on each floor; and
- Fire Engineering design for the other two multi-floor integrated tenant fitouts.
The coordination of input from our 3 key clients and the design requirements to suit tenant modifications and client aspirations for future proofing required 70 different versions of the fire design documents for the project, which involved 37 building consents.
Specific fire engineering design input included computational fluid dynamics smoke modelling to assess impact of smoke movement, hot smoke testing to verify our designs, finite element analysis of the steel structure during fire to minimise the degree of passive protection required, detailed occupant egress modelling to account for potential delays with the complexity of people merging in stairs. Other design complexities included maintaining safe egress from the fully operational underground train station above which the project is constructed and retaining the option to subdivide the building into 4 separate legal titles without impacting on the anchor tenants or ground level retail precinct.
Holmes Fire’s fire design solutions have been the subject of 4 International Conference papers and 3 technical papers.