"The construction of this office tower is a sign of confidence in Brisbane’s economic development"
Graham Quirk, Lord Mayor Brisbane

55 Elizabeth Street

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55 Elizabeth Street, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
December 2010 - June 2013
Full architectural services

23,000m² GFA

18,000m² NLA


The 15 level commercial office building at 55 Elizabeth Street in Brisbane’s CBD is a substantial development that embodies a respectful and forward-thinking approach to contemporary workplace and urban design for the sub-tropics. The development contributes significantly to the urban character of Brisbane and respond to its heritage precinct both in the immediate experience of the pedestrian and the wider experience within the city skyline.

The building is relatively modest in scale, with a tripartite arrangement which reflects historic CBD development heights, stepping both in plan and section in response to important street views to neighbouring heritage buildings. Each datum of the building is carefully detailed with vertical components, providing an ordered hierarchy whilst reflecting the changing contextual qualities and eras at each level – ranging from monumental sandstone planes at entry level to minimalist anodized sunshades to the upper western façade.

Recessed into the top of the building is a large covered terrace, providing sweeping views over the Brisbane River and South Bank. This distinctive skyline element hosts a large scale LED Artwork display titled “Night Watch” by Robyn Bracken generating messages and pulses at night to audiences across within the South Bank arts and cultural precinct.

At street level, activated and landscaped spaces are provided to both the primary street address and also a new public laneway incorporating a café and providing a future cross block link to Charlotte Street. Protected by a finely crafted copper awning and detailed with frameless operable glazing and salvaged ironbark feature screens, three new restaurant tenancies will add to the lifestyle and ambience of this new building.

Internally, generous, well-lit office floors provide a contemporary workplace environment, with 18,000sqm pre-leased by the ATO prior to building completion.


RAIA QLD Beatrice Hutton Award for Commercial Architecture
RAIA Brisbane Regional Commendation - Commercial Architecture

Brief Elements

  • 15 level commercial office building
  • Ground level entry lobby and retail
  • 3 basements
  • Car parking for 50 cars
  • End of Trip facility


  • Responds to the important neighbouring context of heritage buildings to create a unique development which is specific to its place in sub-tropical Brisbane
  • Extensive engagement with the public domain through street frontage and public laneway including landscaping, cafes and restaurant activation
  • Building is set back from site boundaries to address daylight, privacy and outlook together with protecting and framing important street views to heritage buildings
  • Accessible covered terrace at the top floor with sweeping views of the Brisbane River and South Bank
  • Integrated skyline LED Artwork display titled “Night Watch” by Robyn Bracken displaying messages to audiences within the arts precinct across the river


Client, Builder and Project Manager
Structural Engineering
EMF Griffiths
Mechanical and Electrical Engineering
Hydraulic Engineer