One of South Africa’s most iconic and respected companies took its first, momentous step into a shared future together with the Irene Link Precinct. Work has begun on AVBOB’S new head office at the innovative Precinct situated in Centurion, Irene.
AVBOB will move their headquarters to the Irene’s multi-use precinct in December 2023, ending a 30-year tenure in the Pretoria CBD, where they occupied two buildings for their 800 employees. Their new head office will be the latest development in the Irene Link Precinct, which, according to the Owners Abland Property Developers, The Giflo Group and SOM, the precinct is a “naturally connected” development, encompassing commercial, retail, residential and lifestyle amenities in one location.
The 11,500m2 AVBOB head office – which will be the fourth building in the 75 000m2 precinct situated just off the Botha Avenue exchange on the N1 – is designed to not only meet the requirements and aesthetic storey of the funeral services giant, but will be energy efficient, with a four-star Green rating. As it will flank the main entrance to the development and complete the “visual and conceptual gateway into the precinct, it needed to be bold and iconic and set the tone for the precinct architecture and philosophy”.
“We have seen over the last few years how the line between work and home life became increasingly blurred, which is why creating a precinct where we can link the hustle of business and the harmony of the quality of life is both obvious and necessary in the new ‘normal’,” said Grant Silverman, marketing and lease director at Abland. “It is vital to ensure the wellbeing of employees, which, in turn, ensures the wellbeing of our tenants and, thus, their businesses.
“Irene Link strikes the perfect balance between work and play, integrating 75,000m2 of developable commercial space comprising of 15,000m2 of prime convenience retail, as well as 60,000m2 of P-Grade office space, to create a highly productive working environment on the doorstep of everyday essentials. With educational institutes, parks and residential nodes close by, it is not only the future of how we will live, but the present.”
While the AVBOB head office will feature cutting-edge design, it will have a visual dialogue with the architecture of the precinct. Building A, which was completed in 2019, features aluminium louvres, Building B, which was completed in 2020, has floating concrete boxes, Building C, which is currently under construction and will be completed in the first quarter of 2023, will feature a curved glass wedge floating above a landscaped podium. AVBOB’s building, D, is a “curvilinear building with no beginning and no end”.
AVBOB outlined several criteria: the quality of building, environmental ratings and efficiency and local facilities available to employees. They are investing around R400-million into the building.
“It will be an extraordinarily striking building visually, with no hard edges or corners,” said Silverman. “At its heart is a four-storey atrium, with bridges, escalators, green walls and public spaces. It will feature a ‘walking track’ concept around the entire facade where desks will sit back at least two-metres from the edge. This will not only ensure employees are not bothered by sun glare, but will be able to walk around the façade to interact with colleagues and other hubs in the business.”
AVBOB’s head office will also feature roof terraces to offer incredible spaces “for tenants to breathe and congregate with incredible views over Irene”.
“It’s an honour and incredibly satisfying to work with a 104-year-old iconic South African company such as AVBOB. It tells us that the future of the office and lifestyle is changing in a way that will strengthen not only AVBOB as a business, but the local communities and South Africa as a whole.”