A 49 story twist The office tower designed by Danish firm 3XN and executive architect BVN has been completed at Circular Quay in Sydney.

Described as “jenga-like” by the architects, the tower design comprises five volumes, each stacked slightly askew on top of each other, which seeks to break down the scale of the building into five human-scale “vertical villages”.

Quay Quarter Tower by 3XN and BVN consists of five twisted volumes stacked on top of each other.

Image: Martin Siegner

“As the building rises, the north facade moves east. The result is a rotating building with minimal perceived mass, enhanced views of the opera house and harbour, and greater value for lower floors by maximizing the potential of views,” said 3XN. “The tower’s rotation also creates a collection of exterior terraces that tie directly into the multi-level interior atriums, which will contain shared amenity spaces for tenants in each block.”

The new tower reuses the former AMP Center at 50 Bridge Street, originally designed by Peddle Thorp and Walker and built in 1976.

It retains 68% of the structure of the existing buildings and adds 45,000 square meters of new volume on the north side.

Each volume has a continuous spiral staircase connecting all floors.

Each volume has a continuous spiral staircase connecting all floors.

Image: Aran Anderson

“The design optimizes the inherent energy and resources inherent in the existing building and results in a remarkably efficient plan,” 3XN said.

Through recycling of the existing building, material selection and other considerations, the project saved approximately 8,000 tonnes of embodied carbon.

The Quay Quarter tower is part of AMP Capital’s Quay Quarter Sydney district, which also includes four other buildings designed by Studio Bright, Silvester Fuller, Carter Williamson and SJB.