Located in Frankston South on Bunurong/ Boonwurrung Country and backing onto Narringalling (Sweetwater Creek), Sweetwater House provides flexibility and sanctuary for our family of four. Designed and built during Melbourne’s Covid lockdowns, the home reflects an inventive response to low-cost, multi-generational living while telling a story of personal and ecological renewal.

Drawing on knowledge and experience gleaned from previous mass-timber projects, the home was constructed using a prefabricated construction methodology that offered both a highly time/cost-effective solution, and vertical supply chain security.

The home is constructed from 66.8m3 of CLT sourced from PEFC-certified, sustainable softwood plantations in Southern New South Wales. During its growth, the CLT sequesters 49.42 tonnes of C02 and, even accounting for the energy used in manufacturing, has a total negative embodied carbon emission of 32.86 tonnes. The fully electric home employs a next generation AC PV system that to date provides more than the total daily energy demands.

Our ambition was to create a materially honest and highly sustainable home. We developed a plan arrangement that could adapt to the changing needs of two teenage children and allow for multi-generational living. The gravitational heart is an open plan living room and kitchen overlooking the creek. Encircled by tree ferns and eucalypts, the home’s warm timber palette nurtures a sense of welcome and calm.


AIA Victorian Architecture Awards: COLORBOND Award for Steel Architecture

AIA Victorian Architecture Awards: Residential Architecture - Houses (New) Commendation


Bunurong/ Boonwurrung





Gross Floor Area:



Tom Blachford