Edmiston Jones GBB joins forces with Danish urban design firm arki_lab

Global expertise: Edmiston Jones GBB founding director Mark Jones this week formalised an agreement to join forces with Danish firm arki_lab. Pic: Greg Ellis.

Global expertise: Edmiston Jones GBB founding director Mark Jones this week formalised an agreement to join forces with Danish firm arki_lab. Pic: Greg Ellis.

Edmiston Jones GBB has joined forces with Danish urban design firm arki_lab. 

Founding director Mark Jones said he had crossed paths with arki_lab directors Rasmus and Jeanette Frisk over a number of years.

Mr Jones said arki_lab is based in Copenhagen where it is renowned for its work exploring urban scale solutions.

At the same time Edmiston Jones GBB has honed its skills designing buildings mostly in a regional context.

Mr Jones said after years of professional and research based meetings and attending some of the same workshops he and Rasmus Frisk shook hands online last week to formalise an agreement.

It will see the two firms share intelligence and resources on projects that demand modern solutions for the urban and regional environments that we live in.

Both organisations design with people in the communities where they work on projects.

Danish firm arki_lab involves citizens in the process of designing cities.

And Edmiston Jones GBB collaborates on the built environment in areas such as health and medical, education and research.

“Over the past few years our team has been increasingly involved in social forums that concentrate on the future,” Mr Jones said.

“Aged Friendly Illawarra, Property Council of Australia and Illawarra Flame House Sustainable Housing Project are a few..projects that require discussion, consultation and collaboration. This methodology should be part of every design and every dream.”

Mr Jones said the unifying characteristic of both firms was a collaborative approach with an absolute focus on the end user throughout the design process.

That continues into the documentation, construction and occupation of the built space whether that be a living room or an entire city plaza.

He said together, the partnership will inform the very current conversations on affordable housing and living conditions in an increasingly urbanised society.

The lower cost base and competitive benefits of regions should be a priority for the 2017-18 NSW State Government Budget to be tabled in June. 

Further information in a recent blog at http://aej.com.au/arki_lab-collaboration/

Illawarra priorities

The NSW Business Chamber Budget Priorities Submission for the 2017-18 NSW Budget has identified the need for regional economic centres such as the Illawarra to be an investment priority.

The NSW and Illawarra business chamber’s see that as important to achieve the next wave of business and jobs growth.

Illawarra Business Chamber executive director Chris Lamont said by focusing on greater investment in regions the submission was highlighting the importance of investment in infrastructure, particularly regional transport infrastructure and targeted measures to support small business.

There is also a call for a resolution on the complexity and inconsistency on which parts of NSW are classified as regional and subsequently eligible for funding for State and potentially Federal Government funding initiatives. 

Mr Lamont said the establishment of Regional Economic Centres was identified as a means of resolving the problem and achieving improved outcomes from government expenditure.

“The concept, importance and benefits of the Illawarra as a Regional Economic Centre is something the Illawarra Business Chamber is championing.  Unfortunately, there are a number of funding and grant programs that currently exclude parts of the Illawarra region,” he said.

The burden of payroll tax on small business is also a key recommendation in the submission. The Chamber believes the payroll tax threshold should be increased to at least $1 million.  Payroll tax thresholds in Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory are $1.1 million and $2 million respectively.

“Payroll tax is a tax on job creation and actively discourages business, particularly small business from hiring more staff. NSW must be at least competitive with neighbouring jurisdictions,” Mr Lamont said.