You may have read Michael’s recent post on Amenity here; what it means, and how we value it at Redshift.
I was reading an article recently with some seductive images of a building. It looked great! But, as I started reading and looking at the plans it became apparent that there were internal bedrooms, not just inboard rooms looking through a living room with genuine borrowed light and ventilation but well and truly internal – a conventional hinged door to a windowless room as the second bedroom to a 2 bedroom apartment – imagine a large cupboard.
Admittedly the project was in Melbourne where this seems to be more prevalent and where SEPP 65 and the Residential Flat Design Code (or something like it) are not in force unlike here in NSW, but it prompted me to ask you; the reader, architect, layperson, member of the public, developer or real estate agent, what you think?
Are there circumstances where this is acceptable? Are these “beautiful” buildings that will stand the test of time, or are they our “future slums” (to put it provocatively)?
Are they the result of development pressure, inconsiderate architects, or naive planning controls? How does the market take to them?
We’d love to hear your thoughts, no matter what your background or predisposition.
When architects talk about the quality of the amenity of residential projects, did you ever wonder what exactly they meant?
The dictionary definition of amenity is:
A desirable or useful feature or facility of a building or place.
It’s not a bad start, but it certainly doesn’t begin to describe the types of features or facilities considered when designing for good residential amenity, or describing it as such. Read more →
The bulk of Sydney’s expansion occurred around the early 1900s. This period coincided with the Garden City and Garden Suburb Movements and the proliferation of the motor car which allowed the expansion of Sydney beyond the confines of walking distances. The Garden City Movement was an idea of the city organised on a radiating geometry of connections between self sustaining centres in a broader landscaped setting. Inspired by these utopian visions during this period in Sydney’s development established the Federation home with a garden on an individual lot as the prevalent housing model and cemented it as a cultural expectation.
Ok, so you’ve got a property, or you’ve been looking at one wondering whether you can develop it. How do you determine its potential? Are you interested in trying your hand at becoming a property developer?
You’ve seen other people do it! You’ll need the right advice and the desire to do it but here are a few questions you may have had, answered, to set you off in the right direction.
Should TED do more than just share ideas in their conferences? It’s not just TED that raises this thought, the question is, is the traditional conference model outmoded in this day and age of all-pervasive information and media?
The problem I have is not with TED per se, and personally I think the vast majority of talks are astonishing and inspiring, and TED creates an extraordinary platform for which these incredible people can talk and be heard. The problem is, however, a common one amongst these types of conferences and TED is simply in my current thoughts. TEDx Sydney is taking place as I type, giving me pause to wonder if it is missing an opportunity. I will therefore use TED as the example conference for my consideration in this article, but my points could be equally applied to other conferences. Read more →
We recently attended the Architectural Axis conference at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney.
Amongst several exceptonal talks we attended was one by Peter John Cantrill as a prelude to the launch of an extraordinary book which is soon to be released, prepared by Philip Thalis and Peter John Cantrill with the assistance of the Government Architect’s office; the book is called “Public Sydney: Drawing the City”. The book is the culmination of many years of research by not only Philip and Peter John, but the work of university students during their many years of teaching, who have equally benefited from the experience. I am privileged to be one of them. Read more →
We dropped by the Dulwich Hill Terraces site yesterday to have a look at how construction was going. As always, interesting to see your design materialising at one to one scale. Even more interesting to see how our drawings have been interpreted and/or what has been changed. It’s a formative experience. As with many of our multi-residential projects, we don’t do the construction drawings, only documenting as far as the Construction Certificate. Nevertheless we try to anticipate issues on site and design the project in such a way as to be as economical and easy to construct as possible, as appropriate to the project. We like to think we get these things right more often than not, so it is interesting to see on site what has been changed and how it has been changed. When you start to discuss these changes you do risk sounding like a whinging architect, but it does enables to us to better anticipate decisions and construction issues in future designs. It’s an interesting issue and one we grapple with all the time and probably worthy of a post all of its own in the future. Read more →
We went to visit the Lane Cove Apartments late last week, which you will observe from the photographs, are currently under construction. All the external walls are up and they’re currently constructing the roof, which should be completed in the next two to three weeks. It can be a little scary arriving on site to see a massive building at this stage of construction, with the surrounding scaffold making it appear far bulkier than when completed. Read more →
Michael and I have an obsession for coffee. There’s a certain beauty in grinding, levelling and polishing the coffee into the group head, the suspense in the shot coming out with just the right amount of crema, and nailing the texturing of the milk so that it’s not frothy, but thick, even and creamy, pouring it into the cup to blur the distinction between the shot and the milk so that they become one. All of the parts of a project coming together beautifully. The process appeals to our obsessive-compulsive tendencies. Read more →
Recently, my attention was drawn to an art project exemplifying what I (& others) would call a One-Liner. The work is pictured above, “Bad Dog” by Paul Rodriguez at Orange County Museum of Art (Source: The Orange County Register.) The One-Liner appears in many creative pursuits, a work of art (usually public), a building and in works of industrial or object design. Typically the One-Liner is a self-conscious and broadly witty construction, fabricated for the author’s and other’s amusement, proffering with a nudge and a wink, “look at me, aren’t I clever?” A number of buildings, artworks or objects fitting this description may well now be materialising in your thoughts, but for the mystified, let me elaborate and censure.