Bollig Design Group’s talented designers have been transforming Australia’s infrastructure since 1959. The Perth-based multidisciplinary design company is made up of creative architects, master planners and innovative interior designers who use their unique skills to create a wide range of projects across the country. From governmental sector works, health and education buildings, community facilities and major commercial developments including office, industrial and retail buildings, the team of 18 integrated design disciplines continue to exceed client’s expectations.
The dynamic firm’s portfolio, consists of US$500 million worth of developments in diverse projects, from the head offices of the world’s largest independent exploration and production company – ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP), to the interior design of the $6 million Saracen Estates Winery in the Margaret River in Western Australia. “We assess the project, the need, the skill base available and the ability to design a project in a creative, cost effective and efficient manner,” said Edwin Bollig, managing director of Bollig Design Group. “Our goal is always to exceed our client’s expectations, not just meet them.”
Throughout every project, the firm’s ultimate objective is for their work to be a cost-neutral exercise for the client by adding value to each project. The group focuses exactly on the client’s needs – whether it is the integration of design disciplines, saving the client capital costs, creative solutions, or simply originally designed developments, Bollig makes it happen. This approach has led to the repeat clientele and additional work expanding their portfolio each year.
Bollig Design’s style is very much contemporary and as a general rule, the group doesn’t do heritage works. The creative firm are predominately contemporary designers, but work internationally as well as nationally. According to Bollig, what happens in New York City doesn’t necessarily work for Perth based on the different populations, construction techniques and climactic zones. “It’s about designing for locality, climate and environment,” said Bollig. “Finding what is locally suitable and balancing the trends.” The design industry’s current emphasis is on the importance of sustainability. Architects are continuing to focus on buildings that use less energy, that require less maintenance, buildings that actually pay back. This tends to be extremely important to the broader industry as a whole, particularly at the government level with the promotion of sustainability initiatives.
The innovative firm’s portfolio consists of a range of different projects. “Our projects vary – it’s what really keeps us interested in what we’re doing,” explained the founder. Bollig designed Conoco Phillip’s 6,600m² Petroleum Headquarters in Perth, combined within 2,000 m² of landscaped parkland, the project is valued at $20 million and recently completed the $300 million dollar Bankwest Office tower and associated retail centre with integrated underground railway linkages. The group’s architects designed the functional and cost effective buildings with a simple exterior consisting of glass, aluminium and steel. Bollig Design Group’s interior designers converted the Augusta Margaret River Civic Centre in Margaret River into an award winning project. It’s simple and unique design won Bollig a commendation in Commercial Architecture at the Western Australian Architecture Awards in 2009.
One of Bollig’s most sustainable projects is the Cockburn Integrated Health and Civic facility which includes over 7000sqm of office and medical space, a Library, 220 car parking bays, bicycle bays, end of trip facilities and retail tenancies. The sustainable building design includes orientation, passive and active solar design features, natural ventilation, a 100KW solar array providing free energy from the sun and it is designed to 5 star Green Star and 5 star NABERS rating and a reduced operational carbon footprint. “Every time – every project we do is bespoke,” said Bollig. “It’s a different project, a different solution, a different outcome.”
“Architecture is about human beings producing product and using their intellect and intelligence to produce a better and unique product every time,” adds the founder. “That’s what the difference is between buying a house off the shop and using an architect.”
Bollig has provided full-architectural and urban design services on 1 Seddon Street, a unique site found in the centre of a Subiaco city. It is approximately 10,000 m² of office space and 1,100m² of retail which will also create a new urban and retail hub in Subiaco. The company is also working on the $13 million Angove Street Apartments & Retail in North Perth, Rocky Bay’s new headquarters in Mosman Park, as well as library and community facilities for several government authorities.
The vast majority of Bollig’s projects are tendered and the founder explained the company is fortunate to have a good cross-section of builders to work with, especially in Western Australia. The only difficulty is the isolation in that materials can take time to arrive. “A lot of materials are on a 10-12 week lead time from overseas because people keep a very low stock level these days,” said Bollig. “If they do have stock, it’s usually on the east coast.”
Speed of change and choice
Over the past 20 years, the design industry has changed substantially and Bollig believes the biggest changes have been the integration of new technology and the concept of sustainability. Technology is continuing to make engineering and designing much simpler. In terms of design and manufacturing potential and the application of 3D printing, the founder believes the future is looking better because of new materials that are starting to become available in the marketplace. “The future is looking great from the industry viewpoint.”
“Smarter systems that have come out due to computer improvements, software and control mechanisms and the reduction in price and access to that technology including photovoltaics – solar power has made a huge difference to the way we design buildings,” explained Bollig. “The next 20 years is going to be extremely exciting for the industry because of the speed of change and choice.” The creative company’s main goal for the future is to grow its affiliations with east coast companies and grow the firm sufficiently. It has various projects in the pipeline for the future, but the founder explains that Western Australia is currently going through a tough period as it comes out of the mining boom stage. “During booms it’s all about production – make it happen as quickly as possible and now we actually have to be a little smarter.”