Collective #2 – Clarke St Northcote

Project details

  • Site: 121 Clarke Street Northcote
  • Status: Completed
  • Collaborators: Pillar+Post Architecture, Bib n Brace builders
  • Commencement: September 2014
  • Completion : December 2018
  • Partners: 7

After 9 months of searching for a development site and a number of failed bids our second collective secured a 877m2 property in a great location on Ruckers Hill in late 2014. The 7 members of the collective proceeded to secure a planning permit for seven 3-4 bedroom triple storey townhouses on the site in 2016.

Working closely with the team from Pillar+Post Architecture all members of the collective were intimately involved in the design development and were also able to individualise their townhouses. The key highlights of the brief was to design something differentiated and take advantage of the elevated and sloping site to capture not only south western city views but the north eastern aspect to Ruckers Hill.

As part of the planning permit process we undertook a partial redesign of the initial scheme to address Council’s main concerns around visual bulk, landscaping opportunities and impact on the amenity of the neighbour to the east. Initially Council were not supportive of the scheme, however the re-design addressed their main concerns and we secured a near unanimous approval at the Council planning committee meeting.

The design response features a restrained palette of materials that is contextually appropriate for a property that boarders the Mernda trail line. The design also considers the weathering of the building, particularly in relation to the prominent western elevation. The façade to the west features a functional yet scupltural external steel modular frame. The frame is offset from the main structure to allow for vertical planting and external sun shading to buffer and moderate heat load from the western sun. Click on this link to review a copy of the advertised town planning drawings.

Construction commenced in mid 2017 and was completed in late 2018. Bank of Queensland provided the construction finance.

In the end each member of the collective received a 3 or 4 bedroom townhouse, with 2 or 3 bathrooms and 1 or 2 car parks. Participants were able to individualise their townhouse to their specific needs with differentiated floorplans and customised cabinetry and colour palattes.

The project took 4 years to complete. Each townhouse cost circa $1.05m and the valuations & appraisals on completion indicated the homes were worth around $1.2m each.

Thanks to Kristian Gehradte Photography for the great pics.

121 Clarke Street Northcote