Home Industry Strategy Telstra setting up new Canberra HQ, commercial centre

Telstra setting up new Canberra HQ, commercial centre

Telstra is to establish a new Canberra headquarters and a planned commercial centre which will consolidate its current operations in the one location. The new HQ will be part of the Telstra’s establishment of a new team to deliver specialist telecommunications services to the Department of Defence.

Telstra has signed a six-year $1.1 billion contract with the Department of  Defence to provide telecommunications services, creating 350 new Telstra jobs, some of which will be based in Canberra.

The big telco recently signed a 12-year lease for an office building in Mort Street, Canberra and Telstra Property Director, Vito Chiodo, announced today that refurbishment of the building would be completed by early next year, when it will accommodate more than 1,000 people across 13,250 square metres of office space.

"This will be the biggest project our property team has undertaken in Canberra and the largest for the company so far this year.

"The project has plenty of moving parts – we will create state-of-the-art office accommodation for many of our existing teams, install a new Telstra store, fully refurbish the building entrance and reception areas complete with a new café and free Wi-Fi, as well as build extensive accommodation for a large team of specialists now being pulled together to deliver sensitive defence work.

“From a property perspective this project has plenty of moving parts, all of them useful and carefully thought through."

Chiodo said Telstra expected to create 120 local jobs during the construction period, which will begin immediately, with completion early next year.

Under the terms of the agreement, building owner Investa Office Fund will fund the refurbishment of the office floors and building lobby. Existing Telstra operations now housed in offices in Northbourne Avenue in Dickson, National Circuit in Barton, Thynne Street in Bruce and Kent Street in Deakin will all be consolidated in the Mort Street building. Telstra staff will continue to occupy an office at Faulding Street, Symonston.

Chiodo said the refurbishment would follow Telstra’s “innovative office accommodation standards,” which promote staff collaboration and communication through open-plan seating and multiple meeting and breakout areas, with the base building infrastructure to also be upgraded to improve the efficiency of operations.

"The end result will be an environment that is inviting but also reflects the high-tech and customer-focused nature of our organisation."

Chiodo said the Canberra project was the latest deal in Telstra Property’s national office consolidation and refurbishment program which had consolidated Telstra’s previous network of small work locations into larger customised facilities and refurbished existing leased properties.

He said that in the past three years the overhaul of Telstra’s property portfolio had seen more than 220,000 square metres of office space refurbished, and since July 2005, the program had also overseen a reduction of 188 leased sites across Australia, a reduction of Telstra’s net lettable area by 383,713 square metres, and delivered $169 million in gross annualised lease savings.


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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).