Hume Highway Apartments

These apartments carefully balance the concerns of access to sun without the highway noise to the north with the competing views to the south of the Cumberland Plain and the mature eucalypts in the adjacent park. A challenge that has been deftly met.

The Hume Highway Apartments, in Yagoona, are designed to maximise residential amenity in a highly suitable location for residential development.

Context & Design Brief
The proposed development is sited on a idiosyncratic site on the fringe of the Yagoona Town Centre. Bounded to the north by the Hume Highway and to the south by a mature stand of Tallowwood eucalypts in Alice Park. A heritage item, the former JB Brancourt’s garage / First car showroom, is prominently sited centrally on the Hume Highway frontage. Positioned on the fringe of the town centre, the site is a marginal prospect for substantial viable commercial development. Commercial spaces are therefore minimised in favour of a largely residential proposal in a highly suitable location.

Design Approach
Equal weight has been given to site planning and internal planning, landscape amenity was considered equally important as the amenity of the individual dwellings. Similarly, it was a priority to find an appropriate balance in dwelling mix and outlook. The majority of dwellings therefore address the park, with a landscaped set back from both the park and the 3 storey residential apartments to the east. A small number of terrace style houses front the Hume Highway in the north east corner of the site, adopting noise barrier planning principles – achieving good solar access whilst still remaining quiet despite the highway noise from the north. Terrace style houses are proposed to address the adjacent street in order to present a neighbourly lower scale street frontage.

Design Outcome
All buildings are carefully sited to maximise both the common outdoor space and its benefit. The common landscape proposed is large, providing a variety of spaces for the resident’s use. Spaces for gentle recreation, socialising, quiet contemplation as well as more utilitarian activities: BBQs, vegetable gardens, worm farms/ composting and clothes drying areas.

Internal planning and site planning are equally considered and internal dwelling layouts are designed to maximise amenity and utility. Priority was given to attractive park views whilst also endeavouring to achieve the best possible solar orientation to the majority of apartments, along with good natural ventilation. A large majority of apartments are therefore designed with dual or triple orientations. Achieving an excellent level of natural ventilation, solar orientation, as well as outlook into either the shared landscape or the park and district views beyond. Broad, deep recesses are cut into the width of the apartment building, ensuring apartments receive good ventilation and natural lighting. Each dwelling planned to maximise useful floor space, even in compact apartments. Private outdoor spaces are designed for maximum benefit with generally more than one room addressing and receiving the benefit of these outdoor spaces.