Design Guidelines
Macquarie University Property

Staff communal space

Space Description

Staff communal and breakout spaces are integral to enabling a highly functionable working environment, and have proven to successfully augment office environments with space that allows intermediate activities to be productive.  These spaces should facilitate activites between the functions of formal meeting spaces, entry/reception spaces, and staff work points, and can be useful to locate in higher traffic areas of the larger office floor plan.

In larger office environments the breakout space will typically also include tea point, and Tea/Lunch room functions.



Staff work point (professional offices)
Academic work point (academic offices)
Department Reception
Entry Zone
Meeting Room

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Site factors - Easy access to/from entry zone and work points.
- Proximity to amenities.
Room and Spaces Planning Requirements - Shape and size to be determined through design process. Consider size and funtion of office the space will be serving.
- Breakout spaces need not be design to a rational geometry.
Design occupancy - As per office space plan.
Other -

More information about Planning

Building fabric


General - Provide progressive space fitout features, with respect to the building and the end user core business.
Design principles - Best practice and progressive design principles should be tested for Breakout spaces to provide users with inspirational prompts and the opportunity to experience constructive disconnection with the formal working environment for short periods of time.
Materials & finishes - Material selection to be explored through the design and briefing process.

More information about Building Fabric General

Materials & Finishes

Walls- Feature wall colours are appropriate
- Writable wall surfaces can be incorporated near collaboration furniture
- Allow for signage where appropriate
Floors - Floor finish to be determind through design process
- Provide contrasting finishes to help distinguish special areas and to provide perceived spatial disconnection with work points.
Ceiling - Ceiling fabric and finish to be determined through design process
- Provide contrasting finishes to help distinguish special areas and to provide perceived spatial disconnection with work points.
- Allow for unique lighting where appropriate

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Window Selection Requirements - Windows are desirable for this space and may view into open office area or outside.
Glazing - Glazing as per design spec.
- Glazing may be used as writable surface.
Observation Windows - Not required
Window Furniture - Curtains and/or blinds may be used as shading devices or internal screening devices.

More information about Windows


Doors Type - Sliding or swing doors are acceptable.
Door Function - To be determined through design process.
Fire / Acoustic Rated - As per building design spec.
Frame Type - As per building design spec.
Door Hardware - Locking hardware not required

More information about Doors



General- Stainless Steel Sink
- Boiling /chilled Water Unit
Other - Built in cupboards with bechtop and overhead cupboards.
- Provide waste bins to suit size of kitchen/tea point.

More information about Fixtures

Sanitary Fixtures

Kitchen / Tea point- Standard tea point facilities required as minimum where provided.
- Fixtures and sizes to be determined based on number of staff served.
Hot/Cold/Boiling Water - Standard H/C mixer tap for sink
- Boiling / Chilled water unit for sink (ZIP Hydrotap or similar)

More information about Sanitary Fixtures



General Design Principles - Furniture spec to be determined through design and briefing phases.
- Progressive furniture options to be explored for breakout spaces.
- Provide waste bins to suit size of kitchen/tea point.
Recommended Furniture Selection - Allow for a variety of seated and standing activities
- Allow for a mix of private and group activites
- Allow for collaboration and quiet zones

More information about Furniture

Fixed Furniture

Whiteboards - As required by users.  Writable glass surfaces may be more suitable than framed magnetic whiteboards.
Pinboards - As required by users.
Notice Boards - As required by users.
Projection Screens -Typically not required.  May be incorporated into an informal meeting/presentation zone where user brief and design calls for such space.
Kitchen & Tea Room Equipment Pending size of kitchen / tea point, typically allow for:
- Microwave oven/s
- Fridge/s
- Benching surface and cupboard storage
- GPO's to benching for coffee machine, kettle, sandwich press (users to provide small appliances)
- Sink with appointements per 'Sanitary Fixtures'
- Space allocated and GPO's for vending machine/s where appropriate.
- Provide waste bins to suit size of kitchen/tea point.

More information about Fixed Furniture


Window Coverings

Blinds - Blinds to windows as required by building and/or users
Curtains - Curtains to internal spaces may be used as feature screening devices between spaces/zones

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Design Principles - Signage to special department/office areas can be incorporated if required.
Macquarie University Signage and Wayfinding -

More information about Signage



Security type / group -
CCTV - Will typically be required to areas accessible by public.
Access control - Required to greater office area.
Intruder detection - Not required
Keying Refer to Doors

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Noise level - Consideration Required.  Minimise noise carriage to work point areas with appropriate screening, furniture, and material and product selection.
Noise emittance - Medium.  Group gatherings may produce noise.
Room acoustics - To be considered through design process.

More information about Acoustics



Natural ventilation - Natural ventilation as redundancy for mechanical system.
- Manually openable windows.
Supply air - AS 1668 Supply Rate
Controls - Set points to greater office areas, as per mechanical design spec.

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Mechanical cooling - Conditioned Space - Air Conditioning
Mechanical heating - Conditioned Space - Provide Heating to MQ Mechanical Standard
Controls - Commensurate with building system
- Reed Switch To Openable Windows / Louvres
- User control for the air conditioning units are to be located adjacent to the light switch in each room to enable the unit to be turned on or off.
Other -

More information about Conditioning


Potable cold water - To tapset at sink and boiler/chiller unit
Portable hot / warm water - To tapset at sink
Non-portable water - Not suitable
Other -

More information about Water


Sanitary drainage - Required at sink
Trade waste - Not required
Other -

More information about Drainage


Other - Natural Gas fueled appliances not recommended.

More information about Gas

Fire protection

General- Fire protection to be considered as part of overall office design.
- All fire protection requirements should refer to Australian Standards, BCA, and any relevant alternative solutions
Fire detection - To code requirements
Fire suppression

- FIRE HOSE REEL - To Code Requirements

EWIS - To code Requirements
Portable fire equipment - PORTABLE FIRE EXTINGUISHER/ BLANKET - To code requirements
Other -

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Lighting / lux levels - No specific lux level required generally.  Provide appropriate lux level lighting to zones within space as required - eg, collaboration tables will require appropriate lighting.
Lighting controls - Managed by BMS
- Switches banked in logical location.
- Breakout space lighting to typically be part of circulation space circuit.
Other - Natural daylight to space is desirable
- Special and/or feature light fittings may be appropriate.

More information about Illumination


Type - Standard 10A GPO's where required.
Quantity -To suit layout and function of space.
Other -

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Communication / AV

Voice - Not required
Data - Data required for AV equipment
AV type - Where required - to be determined through design process.
WAP - Required throughout
Other -

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Building Commissioning -
Services Commissioning -
As Built Documentation -

More information about Commissioning