Published: 6 Dec 2021
The Victorian Government is supporting jobs and economic growth in the Latrobe Valley, through the delivery of the $30 million Latrobe Valley GovHub in Morwell.
Opened in 2021, the three-storey GovHub is a state-of-the-art office building with capacity for 300 workers. As the regional home for Parks Victoria, Earth Resources Regulation and Solar Victoria, it is bringing 200 public sector jobs to the region
Designed and delivered by Castlerock, the award-winning GovHub is part of a $266 million Latrobe Valley transition package designed to bring jobs and opportunities to the Valley.
Supporting local workers and the community
From conception, it was important the GovHub be created by and for workers in the Latrobe Valley.
Adam Bronts, Director of Castlerock, notes the company wanted to “see the money spent on this building stay within the community”, and that the building was “designed so local people could build it with us, and so that people can see the community put their heart into it.”
This resulted in more than 80 per cent of construction involving local tradespeople, supplies and services, and over 500 workers inducted onto the site throughout the project’s lifecycle.
The building is also delivering wider community benefits, with the in-building café being run by local operator and registered charity Morwell Neighbourhood House.
“We’ve worked closely with them over the journey, and I understand that any food they don’t sell ends up within their soup kitchens, so that is a really positive social outcome,” Adam says.
Working with Traditional Owners
The GovHub stands on the traditional lands of the Gunaikurnai People, and collaboration with the Gunaikurnai Land and Waters Aboriginal Corporation (GLAWAC) resulted in the building featuring paintings from local artists, that are displayed on six-month rotations before being returned to GLAWAC for selling. Meeting room tables incorporating traditional art designs have also been created through a partnership with the Indigenous arts program The Torch, and the youth detention centre in Sale.
“Every aspect of the design of this building was about creating a sense of place. The building reflects the Latrobe Valley, draws you in, and leaves you feeling like it belongs here,” Adam explains.
The Latrobe Valley Govhub is also one of the most energy efficient buildings in the area.
A sustainable workplace
The 5-star energy rating design features a 99-kilowatt rooftop solar system made up of 302 panels, high efficiency LED lighting throughout the building, high efficiency mechanical services and heating systems, as well as structural designs to limit heat infiltration and exfiltration.
The car park also features several electric vehicle charging points, with the option for more to be installed in the future.
Supporting the Latrobe Valley
Now open for business, the Latrobe Valley GovHub will provide a long-term annual boost of $15 million to the local economy and serve as an important economic hub for local workers and businesses.
With a flexible fit-out to accommodate changing tenant needs and the introduction of new technologies, the GovHub will play an important role in the ongoing diversification of the region’s economy.