University Hill Redevelopment

Melbourne, Australia

University Hill Redevelopment
University Hill Redevelopment
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Howick client SBS Group was contracted to undertake redevelopment work within the award winning University Hill development in Bundoora, Melbourne. University Hill is a mixed-use living and working community, bringing together architecturally innovative commercial, residential and retail spaces within a landscaped environment.


A complex façade, simplified

The three-storey office build to be redeveloped presented some unique challenges. Originally designed in a complex form of structural steel and timber, the expansive external façade design featured eyebrow pop-out screens, plus numerous other features required to support the architectural design and intent.

The principal contractor contacted SBS Group, seeking a comprehensive, Build Smarter™ solution to replace the design. After several consultations, SBS Group provided a simple, smart proposal incorporating Howick technology, delivering a solution that met budgetary expectation while staying true to the harmonious aesthetic standards within the University Hill complex. SBS Group was awarded the project, and construction began.


Swapping steel for smarter steel

Utilising Tekla Structures BIM detailing software, SBS Group began with full 3D cad drawings. Premium lightweight Truecore 90MM -1.15 BMT strong steel channel sections were used in lieu of complex structural steel, which was value-managed out, also removing the need for associated trades.

The sections were CNC manufactured using the Howick FRAMA 7600 machine, then prefabricated into lightweight modules. After some initial on-site adjustments due to typical slab discrepancies, the frames were quickly lifted into place and fixed off by an adjustable bracket system from inside the building line.

The high tensile strength frames were quickly and easily installed by the carpentry and cladding team, then adjusted plumb, straight and level, ready for cladding materials.


All-round benefits

Due to the mode of construction adopted for this project, it was possible for cladding to be fixed directly to the structure, eliminating the need for the traditional supply and packing out of top hats – saving valuable on-site time, associated costs and access equipment. Windows could also be easily fixed to the frames, eliminating the need for any independent steelwork, and once installed the frames offered the additional function of fall protection, removing the requirement for temporary handrails. Using Howick technology and machinery, SBS Group provided its client a complete and comprehensive alternative façade package, executed successfully.


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“Howick’s CNC technology and machinery gave us the power and advantage to deliver on this project, whilst leaning on the expertise of SBS Group’s product knowledge. Although SBS Group coordinated a challenging and somewhat complex external lightweight façade, SBS could not have achieved the outcome without Howick’s technical advancements, together with CNC 3D integrated drafting software.”    SBS Group