Evidence Based Design

Meeting Commercial Outcomes

Commercial outcomes are at the heart of our integrated design approach. Integrated design is a means to achieving desired commercial outcomes while satisfying other project objectives. Traditional performance metrics include capital and operating costs. For commercial property owners other considerations, such as market positioning and rental premium, are equally important.

These in turn are strongly influenced by the building environmental performance, as assessed and certified by a green building rating scheme. This additional requirement radically changes the economic equation. Justifying rental premium and attracting quality tenants on the basis of a landmark building form or celebrity architect may not be enough. Building performance has to justify a client’s willingness to pay the extra premium. Indoor environment quality and reduced outgoings are key client considerations. As mentioned earlier these outcomes result from a careful consideration of a wide range of design variables. The integrated design approach becomes the only viable method to successfully reconcile competing objectives of aesthetics, capital cost, operating cost and environmental outcomes.

In order to ensure the commercial success of a project, early stages of design development need to be informed by input from all disciplines and stakeholders. The design team needs to develop a common understanding of the project’s technical, financial and environmental objectives at the earliest stages of design development. This understanding has to be shared and accepted by all team members.

Meinhardt’s multidisciplinary team adopts an integrated design approach where the earliest stages of concept development become an opportunity for value engineering seeking to reconcile competing project objectives. Previous project experience and building modeling and simulation provide the required quantitative evidence for the client decision making process. In this approach engineering outcomes plug directly into the client’s financial model at the earliest opportunity. Design and technology choices are guided by the overall building efficiency rather than showcasing particular solutions or technologies. Less becomes more, simplicity and ingenuity of design sell at a premium. Focus on the properly defined commercial outcome is central to the design development process leading to a sustainable outcome.

(Page 3 of 5)
August 26, 2011

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A good design is a sustainable design
If we define a good design as an efficient design which minimises the use of materials and resources during construction and operation, while achieving the desired outcome, then we are on the way to achieving sustainable design. Sustainability will be further enhanced by maximising the use of renewable/recyclable materials and resources.

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