Olderfleet reimagines the future of work

History, heritage and people at the heart



For decades, the three heritage-listed buildings that make up Olderfleet at 477 Collins Street were the workplace of many of Melbourne’s best brains. Banking merchants, shipping agents, publishers, solicitors and artists all plied their trade behind the Gothic and Romanesque façades of the Record Chambers (1887), New Zealand Insurance Building (1887-8) and the Olderfleet Building (1890). Following a sensitive restoration and reimagining by Mirvac, Olderfleet was unveiled in 2020 to a new generation of the city’s top talent.

Olderfleet’s history echoes the prosperity and growth of Melbourne’s post-gold rush boom. But behind the elaborate façade of Corinthian columns and clerestory windows is a modern-day workplace that rivals any in the world. From the stunning, 25-metre-high glass atrium to the gleaming concrete, steel and glass set against the heritage brickwork, Olderfleet brings together beauty and productivity in the one package.

At a glance

  • Client
  • Services
  • sector
  • Location
    Melbourne, Australia

Impartial, independent advice

Designed by Grimshaw Architects, Olderfleet always presented a monumental challenge: to seamlessly integrate the heritage façade with the construction of a state-of-the-art office tower behind. Every heritage project is bespoke. Costing must be undertaken meticulously, with a deep understanding of the condition of the heritage buildings and an appreciation of the construction methodology and sequencing of the main works.

RLB’s role began with an early cost plan to help validate Mirvac’s construction budget. Following this, RLB took on several roles: as independent certifier representing Mirvac and co-owner Suntec for the fund through; and as independent certifier for most of the tenancies, including anchor tenant Deloitte.

Olderfleet is a magnificent building that reconfirms Marvellous Melbourne as the best place to work for a new generation of top talent. RLB was honoured to play our role.
Tony Moleta, Managing Director Victoria, RLB

RLB’s deep experience and team of experts relished the opportunity to support a visionary development team, says Tony Moleta. “A complex and challenging project like this starts by stepping back to first principles and considering how each element of the building would be constructed. It’s a brainstorming process – one that requires extensive consultation among the team of experts to problem solve,” Tony says.

A fresh place for ideas, industry and innovation

The offices that have stood at 477 Collins Street since the 1880s were always a place of industry and innovation. But now, as we enter a new era of work, Olderfleet supercharges collaboration and co-creation with a design that places people at the centre of every design decision.
Take the concierge services which are reminiscent of a five-star hotel. The building’s 5,000-plus workers can book a restaurant or drop off dry cleaning, order flowers or secure seats at the hottest show in town.

Then there’s Work Club, which has reinvented the business lounge with curated spaces and private suites for tenants needing extra room for special projects or as their teams expand. And then consider the wellness facilities, from luxury end-of-trip to a centre offering personal training, yoga and wellbeing workshops. It’s no wonder Olderfleet was the first building in Australia to gain WELL Platinum pre-certification for its base building.

  • 38
    across 58,000 square metres
  • 5
    NABERS Energy rating
  • 5,000
    work in this WELL Platinum building

Careful costings deliver a bespoke beauty

Anchor tenant Deloitte occupies a massive 28,000 square metres across 14 floors. Deloitte’s wellbeing-focused fitout is home to more than 2,000 people and features some of Melbourne’s most spectacular spaces. Think free-flowing, open plan floors, generous terraces with expansive views of the skyline and a commercial kitchen to make chefs go weak at the knees.

Deloitte’s workplace was designed as a backdrop for one of Australia’s largest corporate art collections. With artworks ranging from five-metre-long murals to contemporary ceramic sculptures to weaving work from First Nations artists, the fitout required innovation in design.”

Quality, sustainability and heritage

Challenging, complex projects don’t always go to plan – and part of the role of an independent certifier is to deal with any disputes among the parties. But Olderfleet’s development and construction teams proved the perfect combination of vision, talent and collaboration. “Everyone involved with Olderfleet brought with them an outcome focused mindset and were determined to ensure the project was a success for all involved. This made what can typically be a challenging role, relatively straight forward,” says Tony Moleta. “Step into Olderfleet and it is immediately evident that a new workplace benchmark has been set.”