Mail Exchange Building

Architect: John Smith Murdoch, 1913-1917, Buchan 2014-15

City of Melbourne | C44

Building Description

The Mail Exchange Building was opened in 1917 as one of Australia’s first examples of Classical Revival architecture. It was originally owned by the Post Master General, and designed by John Smith Murdoch, who at the time was the Commonwealth Home Affairs Architect. Built to relieve the congestion at the nearby Melbourne GPO in a conscious effort to modernize, it brought Melbourne’s postal system into the 20th century. 100 years on, it is now home to the Architectural studio of Buchan’s Melbourne office, the Mail Exchange Hotel, Co-working space The Hub, and the Whitehouse Institute. Buchan’s studio on L1 comprised of a high quality fit out of the open plan office with an area of around 2000sqm. The fit out was designed with high quality fixtures to contrast with the exposed ceilings, original structural elements, and concrete floors. A sheer entrance curtain offers glimpses through to the designers of the office at work. The flexible open plan workspace with a central spine allows for project teams and disciplines to group together providing strong team connectivity. This provides the platform to allow a fully integrated, multi discipline design philosophy to be fostered while creating an engaging and energetic work environment.

What's On

Tours led by the designers from Buchan of the building, showcasing its history and heritage features, and through the architectural studio showcasing the ongoing work of the office through presentations, animations, and models. The heritage listed staircase & Foyer on the Bourke Street Façade will also be open to the public to view as a self guided tour.


Level 1, 696 Bourke St, Melbourne 3000, Melbourne VIC

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