ICI House

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ICI House
Orica House.jpg
ICI House
General information
Architectural style International style
Town or city Melbourne
Country Australia
Coordinates 37°48′32″S 144°58′24″E / 37.809°S 144.97344°E / -37.809; 144.97344Coordinates: 37°48′32″S 144°58′24″E / 37.809°S 144.97344°E / -37.809; 144.97344
Construction started 1955
Completed 1958
Client Imperial Chemical Industries of Australia and New Zealand
Technical details
Structural system 81 meters, 20 floors
Design and construction
Architect Bates Smart McCutcheon

ICI House (now Orica House) is a 19-storey office building in East Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. Begun in 1955, it was the tallest building in Australia upon completion in 1958, breaking Melbourne's long standing 132ft height limit, and was the first International Style skyscraper in the country.[1] It symbolised progress, modernity, efficiency and corporate power in postwar Melbourne, and heralded the construction of the high-rise office buildings, changing the shape of Australia's major urban centres forever.

The building's design, by Sir Osborn McCutcheon (of Bates Smart McCutcheon) was closely modeled on the best of corporate design being pioneered in the United States with all-glass high-rise such as the United Nations headquarters. Detail and documentation of the building's design was managed by Douglas Gardiner who was a partner of BSM.[2]

The building made headlines soon after construction as panes of the coloured glass shattered and fell to the street below due to impurities and the heat of Melbourne's summers.[3]

It is one of the few post-war office buildings to be found on the Victorian Heritage Register, and the first to be added.[4]