Premier global construction company Multiplex and Monash University have set a new benchmark for sustainable design and construction, receiving Passive House certification on Gillies Hall located at Monash University's Peninsula campus in Frankston.

The new student accommodation complex is the first large scale building in the southern hemisphere to achieve Passive House certification, leading the way in the industry for the Passive House standard.

Gillies Hall comprises 150 single occupancy units set over six levels and was completed by Multiplex in March, 2019. The student accommodation is over three times more efficient than existing residential halls within Monash University.

We are thrilled to achieve Passive House certification on this progressive and highly-sustainable student accommodation. Together with Monash University, we have set a new industry standard for environmentally sustainable construction, and we look forward to working towards the prestigious Passive House standard on future projects,†said Graham Cottam, Regional Managing Director Multiplex Victoria.

The certification was issued by the Passive House Institute in Germany after a collaborative process with ESD consultants, AECOM, and registered Passive House certifier, GRUN Consulting, to demonstrate the building's compliance with strict Passive House standards.

The project was Multiplex's first foray into cross-laminated timber construction (CLT) and has resulted in an outstanding success. The use of CLT has the capacity to halve the embodied carbon in the building relative to a concrete structure.

ESD was a key driver for the project in order to receive Passive House certification.  Gillies Hall is 100 per cent powered by renewable energy in line with the University's net zero carbon emissions strategy. This was enabled with the combination of rooftop solar panels, an all-electric design and Monash's power purchase agreement with Murra Warra wind farm.

Gillies Hall also includes a rain water harvesting tank and water sensitive urban design, notably the creation of a landscaped dry-creek bed that provides additional opportunities for recreation, manage storm water flows during high rain events and connect into the natural waterways of the campus.

Bradley Williamson, Executive Director, Buildings and Property Division, Monash University, said: "Gillies Hall will deliver an outstanding experience for its residents through a high quality thermal indoor environment, and plays a significant part in the University's Net Zero initiative through its all electric design.  The building is a key component of the University's vision to develop the Peninsula campus into a vibrant and integrated health and education precinct."

"Gillies Hall will enhance Monash University's status as a university of choice for domestic and international students."

Designed by high-profile architects Jackson Clements Burrows, Gillies Hall includes communal kitchens, games rooms and principle apartments with a total floor area of 6,000 square metres. Monash University Peninsula campus is part of a vibrant regional integrated health and education precinct and is fast becoming a leading centre of allied health and primary care education and research.

Multiplex has extensive experience within the student accommodation sector and delivered Monash University's $145 million student accommodation precinct in April, 2016. The precinct comprises four new residential buildings providing a combined total of more than 1,000 studio apartments, with associated retail and student informal learning spaces.