The project makes a unique contribution to a neighbourhood dominated by post-industrial warehouses or conventional multi-storey apartments. A lightweight construction system is deployed for three residences, allowing each to become a freestanding structural entity. This carries multiple advantages, such as improved construction time and cost efficiency, as well as improved acoustic isolation, as complex detailing was not required to minimise structure borne noise transmission from one unit to the next.

The approach worked to the contractor’s key competencies, namely carpentry and steelwork. With a design response that prioritises light and space, complex and expensive finishes were not required. A central stair void allowed for the inclusion of an upper level roof light, brining northern light deep into lower levels of the building. This central void also acts as a thermal chimney, allowing hot air to rise and vent through vents on the upper levels.

The row of three townhouses accepts and embraces the traditional terrace vernacular of the surrounding suburb. The tough, urban frontage on River St is shielded by a double-layered façade of glazing behind a timber and glass louvered screen. A private courtyard separates townhouses and a rear pavilion, housing a garage and fully serviced studio.

 

 

Awards:

RAIA Victorian Architecture Awards - Multiple Residential Award
2006

Date:

2006

Gross Floor Area:

3 townhouses over 4 levels