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Michael McKenna - Works


This design is for a 3 storey apartment building in Barkly Street, Footscray. The site was formerly a petrol station with three street frontages. The neighbourhood is a mixture of timber villas, warehouses, showrooms, and parking lots. These are typical Footscray streets, tightly planned with compact setbacks and single storey in timber and brick. Barkly Street is a major traffic thoroughfare and capable of increased height (maximum 9 metres) and site density.

Design Yield: 20 apartments with on site car parking .

Some key aspects of the design are:

The design organises two residential buildings to the site corners with garden apartments, a central address point and a courtyard. The design recalls Richard Neutra’s Jardinette Apartments, Hollywood (c1927) - a modern garden apartment prototype - with low profiling, expressed balconies, colourful and abstract. The roofscape is modelled to graduate building heights to the single storey neighbouring houses and forms a sky silhouette. Facades have patchwork articulation to rescale the surfaces to human scale and finished in a metal siding (weatherboard) and render. The street edges have high fences in painted render and steel picket with intermittent tree bays.

Passive ESD elements are integrated into the design with good natural light and ventilation, high value insulation, double glazing, and sun shading. Active ESD technology will include solar panels, AAAA rated water appliances, stormwater harvest with recycle.

Stage of Development: Planning Permit achieved.

Timeline: 2010-11.