Eight-Storey Mass Timber Tower to Rise Over Parramatta River

CHROFI's design uses engineered wood products to "defining architectural statement of the building."

Fri 04 Aug 23


Sydney-based architect CHROFI has won a design competition for two major buildings on the Parramatta riverfront: a 52-storey mixed-use tower and an eight-storey commercial building made from mass timber.

CHROFI was founded in 2000 by Choi Ropiha following his win in the international competition to re-design the TKTS booth in Times Square, New York

The studio is now based in Manly, Sydney and is home to a team of 35 professionals headed by directors John Choi, Tai Ropiha and Steven Fighera.

Wood Central understands the eight-storey commercial building will be built out of CLT and Glulam, with the mass timber structure “the defining architectural statement of the building, bringing a warmth and natural tactility to the proposal.”

A render of the eight-storey mass timber commercial office building in Parramatta. (Image Credit: Architecture AU).

The taller of the two towers will house a range of apartments above a five-storey podium, accommodating 4,000 square metres of commercial and retail space.

CHROFI’S winning design for the mixed-use development in Parramatta. (Image Credit: Architecture AU).

“Underpinning the design response,” according to the architects, “was establishing an understanding of what high-density developments in (Parramatta) Sydney’s Second CBD currently looks like.”

“And how we might alter those preconceptions to create a better residential, commercial, retail and public outcome.” 

The city of Parramatta has been revitalised following the 130,000 square metre mixed-use Parramatta Square development delivered in 2021.

In December 2021, Parramatta Square ‘topped out’ with a peak rivalling any building worldwide. Courtesy of @7news.

A series of integrated public artworks developed in cooperation with artist Otis Hope Carey and Indigenous consultancy firm Bangawarra will depict local Indigenous stories of water, sky, and mountains at ground level, flanking the eastern side of a new “urban piazza,” at the arcade level.

A render of the winning design for the 52-storey mega tower (Image Credit Architecture AU)

Apartment residents will benefit from elevated gardens on the tower platform and rooftop, and commercial building tenants will have views of the nearby park and the Parramatta River from a green area on the roof.

A render of the rooftop communal space.(Image Credit Architecture AU)

“The scale and strategic location of the site mean that it will transform the context as much as it responds to it, and it will define how the precinct emerges around it,” stated CHROFI.

Sydney has emerged as a leader in mass timber adoption, as evidenced by projects such as the proposed Milligan Group’s hybrid timber tower and the Atlassian Central Tower

David also spoke about Atlassian’s proposed new headquarters will operate on 100 per cent renewable energy. Atlassian is one of a number of Mass Timber buildings proposed Australia-wide. Wood Central recently covered the push by Australia to become a leader in mass timber construction.
Atlassian’s proposed new headquarters will operate on 100 per cent renewable energy. Atlassian is one of several Mass Timber buildings proposed Australia-wide.

With recent backing from investment specialist Merricks Capital, Milligan Group aims to complete the world’s tallest hybrid timber tower by 2030.

In June 2023, Milligan Group applied to demolish the site’s current buildings as part of the project’s next stage.

In July 2022, Milligan Group received initial approval to rezone a 2,000-square-metre site at the junction of Hunter and Pitt streets in Sydney’s CBD.

Australia is making waves in the realm of mass timber construction, with ambitious projects like the Milligan Group's hybrid timber tower and the Atlassian Central Tower showcasing the nation's commitment to sustainable practices and leading the charge towards a more eco-friendly future. (Photo credit: AAP)
Australia is making waves in mass timber construction, with ambitious projects like the Milligan Group’s hybrid timber towe showcasing the nation’s commitment to sustainable practices (Photo credit: AAP)

The location for the world’s tallest hybrid timber tower will offer breathtaking city and harbour views and a blend of residential, commercial, and retail spaces.

In March 2023, Merricks Capital joined with Milligan Group to finance the $2 billion 55-story mixed-use commercial tower construction.

The tower’s design will be selected from a design competition in May 2023 before being presented to the state government for approval.


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