New World City Design Guide - Buildings that Breathe

Brisbane City Council has prepared the New World City Design Guide - Buildings that Breathe. The guide provides a shared vision for achieving subtropical building design in Brisbane. New buildings in Brisbane’s city centre, mixed-use inner city, transport corridors and principle regional activity centres embrace the subtropical climate. They open up to cooling breezes, providing lush landscaping, shade and comfort. 

Showcasing the highest standards of design and construction, these developments contribute to Australia’s New World City identity. This creates an enviable and lush urban environment attracting investment and tourism, celebrates our lifestyle and stimulates economic activity.

An initiative of the Brisbane City Centre Master Plan 2014, the non-statutory guide complements Brisbane City Plan 2014. The guide provides an inspirational design benchmark for architects, planners, developers, property professionals and the broader community.

Illustrating best-practice examples and easy-to-understand design elements, practitioners are encouraged to use the guide. It also includes a checklist, to help understand and respond to the requirements of subtropical building design in Brisbane City Plan 2014.

Eight key design elements

The New World City Design Guide - Buildings that Breathe is a user-friendly, multi-dimensional tool. It is underpinned by eight design elements identified as key considerations to creating good subtropical architecture and ‘buildings that breathe’:

  • orientate yourself
  • occupy outdoor spaces
  • illuminate with daylight
  • natural air and ventilation
  • shade and protect
  • living greenery
  • identity matters
  • reduce energy and waste.

Download the guide

Download the New World City Design Guide - Buildings that Breathe:

Design focused prelodgement package

Council has also launched a design focused prelodgement package service. This service provides industry with advice on how developments can align with the elements of the New World City Design Guide.

Last updated: 8 June 2022

Brisbane City Council acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land and their unique relationship with their ancestral country. We pay respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders of Brisbane, and recognise their strength and wisdom.