The project involved construction of a large warehouse at the UQ Gatton Campus to provide storage capacity of 33,000 lineal meters of compactus shelving for Library material which was housed at Ipswich, Milton and St Lucia sites. 

The key challenge of the project was to design a floor slab to the required heavy load capacity and very tight movement criteria required for the automated compactus units. 

Robert Bird Group’s innovative approach was to modify the existing extremely reactive soil conditions and to control the moisture variation through partial soil replacements together with a protecting cut-of wall to achieve a non-spanning economical slab that could resist high loads with minimal defection 

Project Value: 
$6.1 million 
Year Completed: 
Building Metrics: 
Total Area 2,500m2 
The University of Queensland 

Primary Contractor: 
McNab Constructions 
Robert Bird Group Services: 
Structural Engineering 
Civil Engineering 

Key technical challenges

  • The primary tower structure consists of a composite slab and beam structure. Due to the long beam spans and thin slab, extensive analysis for footfall vibration was required to ensure the structure achieved code requirements and client expectations.
  • Working with the existing structure and developing design solutions that strengthened rather than demolished.
  • Extensive co-ordination with the mechanical engineer to develop a strategy that minimised beam penetrations and beam notches.
  • Differential shortening analysis with consideration of mega truss, steel structure, concrete structure and existing structural elements

Environmental performance

  • 5 Star Greenstar
  • 5 Star NABERs Energy and 4 Star NABERs Water ratings.

Engineering services provided by RBG for the Docklands Library project consisted of two major components:

  • Structural Assessment of the existing Wharf Structure, Structural Design of the Library Building,

Wharf Structure component included the following:

  • Assessment of load carrying capacity of the existing timber piles, Development of rectification measures to enhance piles capacities. Assessment of the wharf deck capacity and durability.

Library Building component included the following:

  • Polished concrete ground Floor slab, Design of CLT walls and floors, Lateral stability design.
  • Design of timber columns and beams, Design of structural steel and timber elements of façade.
  • Design of secondary steel structures on the roof of the Library Building.

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