PTW Architects founded in Sydney, 1889, is a highly diversified architectural practice which was acquired by Chinese architecture and engineering consulting firm China Construction Design International in 2013. 

The firm is an all rounder when it comes to achievements. PTW Architects has given the world many beautiful projects like The Angle Place Development, AMP Centre, Sydney, One Central Park, Sydney, etc. 

1. The Angle Place Development

The Angel Place development project by PTW Architects is a predominantly commercial project located in the Martin Place precinct. The 35 levels tall commercial tower also hosts a grand recital hall, spread over an additional four levels.

While conforming to the planning controls that guided the building form in terms of its heights, setbacks, and the urban relationship to its context, the architects have punctured the brutalist building form with numerous internal courtyards to allow sunlight and natural ventilation to penetrate the office floors.

The building also aims at culturally revitalizing the historic Laneways of its context through the recital hall and podium. The commercial and cultural organs of the buildings have been designed to complement each other while operating separately through an airy glazed wall that separates them. The project is a shining example of uniting the cultural fabric of a city with its necessary economic infrastructure, all in a limited timeframe.

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2. Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery

As the centre for railway construction, engineering, and maintenance in Tasmania for over 120 years, The Inveresk Railway Workshops were a cultural landmark. Their redevelopment aimed at converting the iconic structures to house varied adapted functions. The project was also of substantial economic significance for both Launceston and Tasmania.

Of the larger workshop cluster, the central group, comprising 26 buildings, was transformed into a museum and an art gallery to house the esteemed collections of the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery. 

The design is replete with the historic charm the site possesses and truly portrays how the historic value of a structure can be infused with its retrofitted functions, preserving valuable resources and the cultural integrity of a city.  

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3. Sydney grammar school, concert hall/ John Vallence Recital Hall

Nestled in the heart of the Sydney Grammar School, this high-performance underground hall succeeds in distilling the historic character of its context and preserving it for generations to come. 

The addition was seamlessly integrated with the campus since its conceptualization and the innovative top-down construction approach allowed the construction to continue beneath without disturbing or closing down any part of the school. The concert hall also provides the campus with covered circulation, playground spaces, a flat-floored area for examinations, a regulation-sized basketball court, and substantial landscaping on the roof. It is truly an essential organ for the school.

The material palette of the structure is said to be – quintessentially Sydney, and this reflects the unique construction process. The juxtaposition of the exposed historic Sydney sandstone bedrock in the walls, with the wooden floorboards and massive steel trusses, creates an immersive ambiance, infusing the architecture of the space with the Operatic experience of the space houses.

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4. The kings street courts- supreme court of NSW

Preserving the built heritage of a Nation and enabling it to continue functioning for its original purpose is a matter of great pride. And this is what the firm achieved with the restoration of the Kings Street Courtroom Complex. 

The historic courtroom complex had been saved from demolition by large-scale citizen movements that involved the then chief justice of the country.  

The progressive restoration of the site aims at equipping the courtrooms to meet the needs of contemporary judicial servicing in a phase-wise restoration plan. This initiative also involved allowing access to the specially-abled and state of the art technology. The project also established an Interpretative Centre. The site now also functions as a museum for legal studies and a venue for special events and activities associated with the law and legal profession. It offers access to many different public groups.

The innovative and inclusive restoration of the site has transformed the space into a living museum. One that succeeds in conserving and continually observing history.

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5. Quay Grand, East Circular Quay

Landmarked as the southernmost building of the East Circular Quay project, The Pullman Quay Grand is an institute of luxury located ideally, a few minutes from the many iconic landmarks of the capital.

The establishment complements the one-of-a-kind conditions the site provides through its design. For instance, the three-story change of level between Macquarie Street and the Quay below is exploited by placing the reception just off the street. This reception space then leads into a series of public spaces, including restaurants, bars, conferences, and recreational facilities.

The operable glass screen that enclose most of the spaces allow impactful visual connections to their iconic context proving the vitality of context-centric design and the luxury it infuses into the structure.

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6. AMP Head Office

Marking the seaboard gateway to the Sydney Circular Quay, the AMP is yet another Landmark building By PTW Architects in the iconic location.

The curtain glazing on its massive, curved form, stoic stature and fineness, and consistency of finishes set it apart from the masses to secure its position as one of the most iconic buildings of the International Style. 

Designed as the head office of one of Australia’s’ pre-eminent financial institutions, the Australian Mutual Provident Society, the structure caters to the institutions’ every need. The open plan, well-lit office space, and generous staff amenities generate a healthy and productive working environment. The state-of-the-art technologies for information processing and transfer allow for increased efficiency. The structure also saves on valuable resources through creative strategies such as harbour seawater for the ducted air conditioning. 

The manner in which the design integrated the fields of office design and technological strategies set an industry standard for the second half of the 20th century.

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7. Luna Apartment Complex

The firm secured the project by winning a design competition the clients drafted for the project. The brief catered to 325 residential units configured within seven towers, retail, and café units at the ground level. 

Located within the Marrickville Council’s McGill Street precinct, the master plan for the project also involved the redevelopment of former light industrial areas to provide new medium density accommodation. It also aimed at the general revitalisation of the urban fabric. This was achieved with the addition of a free access public park within the site. 

The architects drew inspiration for the form and planning of the project from its immediate cultural context to infuse its unique Australian industrial character.

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8. Johns Bay Wharf

Located at the end of the Pyrmont Peninsula, The Johns Bay Wharf was the last significant large-scale wharf to be refurbished on Sydney Harbour. Established in the early 18th century, it catered to rich colonial cargo coming into the island. It consists of two linear cargo sheds, each with an access road to both levels allowing for vehicular movement within the shed. 

The project aimed at preserving the maritime industrial aesthetic that the wharf possessed while equipping it with a contemporary office space. The abstract timber composition on the street facade of the new shore building transforms the structure into an active urban space. 

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9. 383 George Street

383 George Street represents a carefully crafted design intervention that knit together two heritage-listed buildings into a mixed-use development. The firm also won a City of Sydney Design Excellence Competition for the project.

Located in the retail heart of Sydney on George Street, the building consists of a 4-story, retail podium occupying the two heritage buildings. The design truly brings together heritage conservation and international standard building. 

The structure introduced a through-site street link using one of the last remaining cartilages in the city. Above this celebration of the city’s-built heritage, 13 floors of premium perches above the retail podium. The structure is truly a shining example of the harmonious juxtaposition of heritage retrofitting with modern design. 

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10. The miller

221 Miller Street is a new 21 level mixed-use residential development located on the leafy Miller Street boulevard in North Sydney that aims at answering the residential needs of the new-aged cosmopolitan millennial. PTW Architects were offered the project through a Select design competition. 

The project comprises a retail plaza with a pedestrian walkway link. The residential unit consists of a five-level podium of 100 serviced apartments with a 16 level, 180 apartment residential tower, served by separate visually connected lobbies.

The architecture of the space comprises two distinct parts connected vertically. One being a serviced apartment podium featuring charcoal-coloured angled portals that frame the east and west-facing glazing and the apartment levels divided into eastern and western tower forms. The triangular balconies protruding from the surface define the form of the towers. Their golden aluminium provides a sharp contrast with the charcoal of the podium, maintaining the strong vertical connection the design innovatively achieves

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11. The Alexander

The Alexander truly celebrates the vibrancy of the Sydney Harbour. The playful design of the curved colourful facades breathe life into the building. This is accentuated with the lively openable shutter system, making the structure all the more dynamic. Almost mimic the waterfront that reflects it. The shutters are also articulated with the numerous planter systems that create a counterpoint to the facade. 

Nestled quietly in its upbeat urban complex, the planning of the towers orient its four apartment lobbies to the waterfront promenade with a play of angles and height, allowing private living in an active public space. 

Marking the South-west corner of the Barangaroo development, nearly all the apartments of this primarily residential tower offer exquisite views of the Darling Harbour. As the living rooms all open into generous balconies, almost all apartments are cross-ventilated and boast excellent natural light. With its passive environmental interventions and thoughtful design, the Alexander is set to play a pivotal role in adding to the architectural richness and diversity of the city. 

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12. 888 Bourke Street

The site possesses a complex geometry. The site is at the corner of a two-street junction and will undergo further division owing to a new road. Taking cues from its industrial heritage and possible future context, the architects arrived at an elegant and simplified planning strategy that expressed its layout through well-articulated forms.

The soft curvatures of all the brick-clad corners add warmth to the street character. The resulting Street walls of the sinuous L-shaped Buildings are connected visually through the proposed site link, beneath a pair of imposing double-height entry bridges, each facing the other across the future roadway.

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13. Wharfs 8-10 Pyrmont Bay

This project was a two-stage waterfront development for Pyrmont Bay in Sydney Harbour. The design intervention combined mixed-use commercial, residential, retail, and marina berths developments into the site. 

The first phase of the project involved the development of the harbour edge commercial office building and a retail complex spread over three levels and was completed by 2001. This initiative extended into the public domain that included a public park. 

Inclusive of active shaded spaces and timber decks, the park was an addition that revitalised its context. The development stands to show how a thorough morphology of the wharf allowed a contemporary building to be sensitively woven into the urban fabric.

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14. Mascot Central Apartments

This project aims at the Design and Documentation of a mixed-use development. The site is part of the Mascot Station Town Centre Precinct and identifies as an Urban Activation Precinct. 

The architects propose many significant revisions to the master plan in order to increase the quality of the private and public domains of the space. The design includes extensive parks and landscaped areas as buffer spaces as urban activation zones with over one thousand residential and serviced apartments. It also involves the integration of a supermarket, retail, and childcare facility. The project is another shining example of the harmonious weaving of varied facets of an urban lifestyle into an integrated city fabric.

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15. Hotel Neiburgs

The Project is close to the firm’s heritage itself since it involved the adaptive retrofitting of a classic art-nouveau apartment built by the grandfather of its former director, Andrew Andersons. Nationalised during the Soviet occupation of Latvia in 1940, the structure was returned to family ownership in 1992, and the design brief aimed at transforming the apartments into a hotel. 

Post numerous expensive repairs the 110-year-old structure is now a 55-suite hotel with a four-star rating. The firm partnered with local heritage architects and interior designers guided by a detailed conservation management plan. Nearly all the surviving details are carefully conserved, and many elements find themselves incorporated into the new interiors. The building is now equipped with glass elevators, contemporary lighting, conference rooms, and a health club.

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