The site of the former Seamart bu' />

Auckland's new NZI Centre uses state-of-the-art features to make the five-level block environmentally friendly.

The site of the former Seamart building in the Viaduct Basin will soon house 700 staff from IAG, NZI and State Insurance.

The building is owned by Newcrest Group.

Some of the staff have already started moving into the distinctive glass block on the corner of Fanshawe St and Market Place.

Last week property professionals went on a tour in which insurance staff worked closely with the Green Building Council to show off the property.

Green features include lifts in the curved block that generate electricity on the descent, feeding power back into the building's supply, and a roof-top garden with space to seat large groups on the top level.

IAG sustainability manager Sarah Holden said 80 per cent of rainwater captured in the garden would be filtered into storage tanks and used as "grey water" for toilets.

A treble skin of glass on the northern side of the 9250sq m block has adjustable louvres trapped between the glazing to cut interior heating and cooling expenses.

Staff are having to reduce paper files by as much as 70 per cent as minimal storage is available in the new block, which will be officially opened later in the year.

A ground-floor atrium on the Market Place side opens up the entire five floors to a public cafe but noise from that area is absorbed via banks of acoustic panels installed throughout all levels of the building.

A bank of large circular roof-top skylights filter natural light down into the entire building, cutting the lighting costs and enhancing interior quality.

Under-floor air-conditioning ensures only the space occupied by people is heated or cooled, not areas near ceilings. Air-conditioning is traditionally installed in ceilings in office blocks and air is forced down, pushing up the electricity bills.

Because a raised-access floor was built to accommodate air-conditioning in the NZI building, many of the 200 indoor plants such as large palms have been sunk into the floor.

IAG communications and media manager Jo Mullany said the building was the country's first large new office block to have under-floor air-conditioning.

Other features include a room for primary care-givers on offer to all staff, with DVD player, baby-changing pad and full kitchen, a lecture theatre/training room, flat-screen electronic monitors installed outside rooms to inform staff of activities, and showers and changing facilities for walkers, joggers and bikers.

The building provides minimal basement-level parking for about 60 cars but bike stands to accommodate up to 65 cycles.

Vines have been planted which will rise up vertical wires to eventually create green living walls between floors.

The building's 43 meeting rooms have been named after prominent New Zealanders, including industrialist Sir James Fletcher and former All Black Buck Shelford.

Workers moving into the new block will leave four CBD sites including six floors of IAG House on the corner of Queen and Wyndham Sts, 131 Queen St, AXA House at 37-41 Shortland St and the WHK Gosling Chapman building at 51-53 Shortland St.