Affordable Housing
Friday 31 Aug 2012


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87 Chapel Street, St Kilda is an affordable housing development project commissioned by the Port Phillip Housing Association in Melbourne, Australia.

The project consists of two 4-storey apartment buildings, totalling 81 units and includes a basement car park for 70 vehicles. The apartments are orientated to a north facing yard, anchored by a large existing box elder, with eastern elevations that reflect the vibrant surrounding neighbourhood of St Kilda.

The project brief presented the opportunity to establish the buildings as individually units while using an over-arching design language that offered a sense of single community to all residents.

There were two essential criteria: affordable materials and a design outcome that conveys a human touch and sense of the home.

Using kiln-dried, sustainably-sourced hardwood and brightly coloured laminate panels, the public space of the interiors define the building and offer a directive mode for residents and visitors alike.

Additional narratives play out in these spaces, such as a cat chasing a bird to add a sense of play to the internal spaces. The two buildings are distinguished by contrasting colour palettes which extend into the apartment interiors - enough to give the tenants a connection to their home, but not so much as to prevent them from personalising the blank canvas of their living space.

87 Chapel Street's eclectic, vibrant interior design also extends into the basement car park; no aspect of the shared interior space has been overlooked. Extensive Ecologically Sustainable Development (ESD) initiatives include solar hot water panels, rain water collection and reuse, centralised gas plant for hydronic heating and domestic hot water, double glazing, and incorporation of 5 WELS-star water fixtures.

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