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Circulation across five levels of an existing and operational high-rise tower have been transformed with the ambitious insertion of a feature corkscrew staircase.

Suncorp NZ’s vision was to transition their business to an Agile Workflow Methodology. Their workplace solution therefore needed to provide the right environment to make it a success.

As a result of integrated strategy and design, Suncorp NZ have consolidated their footprint from two sites to one, and from nine levels to five in a single high-rise tower, while retaining similar staff numbers. Achieved by adopting an ambitious sharing ratio, their new space is designed to provide a sense of shared ownership, safety, wellness and wellbeing. 

One of the project’s most ambitious undertakings was overcoming the physical divide across five floors. By inserting a corkscrew staircase, the design has created one workplace within the larger context of the five cellular levels in a 2000’s tower building. To do this, 6x6m voids had to be extracted from the centre of the floorplates, removing 120 tonnes of concrete and replacing it with 60 tonnes of structural steel. 

Rather than exiting their floor to access another level of the business, employees now have an internal staircase which connects them all. 

A mix of work settings, meeting room and social/collaborative spaces have been provided relevant to the requirements identified by the workplace strategy and in accordance with Suncorp NZ’s workplace Guiding Principles.

Project efficiency and decision making was supported by running the project programme through Suncorp NZ’s Agile Workflow Methodology – the new way of working that would be rolled out to staff. An initial half-day facilitated workshop established the 18-month ‘Flight Plan’ to completion, containing 3-monthly milestones. The project was kept to programme and budget with daily scrum stand-ups, an in-house Kanban board and weekly scrum-of-scrum sessions across all project streams. 

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New Zealand






Auckland, New Zealand

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