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Switched On receives national award for first-ever commercial build

15 May 2017

Switched On was recognised at the New Zealand Commercial Project Awards on Friday night. The property maintenance company received a Bronze Award for their head office ‘Hughes House’ in Christchurch – their first-ever commercial building project.

Managing Director Chris Hughes says that the award is a huge achievement for the company, which is highly-experienced with residential renovations and commercial fit-outs, but not with commercial new-builds.

“We’re a property maintenance company and specialise in renovations and repairs. Taking on the build of a commercial premises was a big ask for our team and to be recognised for our excellent workmanship, construction practices and innovation is outstanding.”

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The prestigious awards programme run by the Registered Master Builders Association sets the benchmark for commercial construction in New Zealand. Hughes says that receiving Bronze shows that his team are up with the best-of-the-best.

“We wanted our head office to be a showcase of what our builders, electricians and painters can do. We knew that we had achieved a high-quality finish, but to receive an award shows that our work really is top-notch.”

The building was designed by Walker Architecture, with interior design by Redesign Group. It is comprised of two expansive office suites, spread over two levels at the front of the building, with a large warehouse at the rear. Switched On’s builders, electricians and painters fitted-out the entire space themselves, starting with erecting a pre-cast concrete shell in February 2016. The project was managed by Dave Calder of DC Projects and supported by Kirk Roberts structural engineers. It was completed under budget in just 10 months.

“We’re very thankful to our building partners; we couldn’t have done it without them. The knowledge and understanding that these companies brought to the project enabled us to set our sights high and create an exceptional base for our team,” Hughes says.

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The building’s interior was inspired by the vibrant colour pallet of Switched On’s company logo. Bright blue tiles feature at random within the sustainable and recyclable carpet; coloured metal-mesh lights hang over the kitchen islands; and blue Perspex is used to divide the office spaces. Features, such as the text-artwork made from recycled screws in the print zone, reflect the different trades that make up the company. 

Outside, blue concrete panels, vertical fins and louvers stand out on the façade, and outdoor green spaces have been created for staff to enjoy. X-shaped struts visually demonstrate the strength of the building, which was designed to 100% of the new building code.

Hughes House was built to bring together Switched On’s fast-growing team in Christchurch. It was the first building to be completed in the new Belfast Business Park and was officially opened by Rt. Hon Bill English in November 2016.

For more information, contact:

Chris Hughes, Managing Director

e: chris.hughes@switchedon.net.nz

p: 027 662 8097