The Salisbury Townhouses, designed by NTF Architecture are an adaptive re-use project that has merged sustainably driven design with low budget housing. The site in Blackburn, Victoria originally consisted of six 50sqm one bedroom units which were retained and reconfigured. The new homes now contain a kitchen, dining and living spaces and a second level was added to house two bedrooms, two bathrooms and a study space.
New large expanses of glazing were installed to provide ample natural light and views to the previously dark ground floor spaces.
The compact, and highly considered living spaces serve as a model for smaller footprint living and as a way to make use of outdated housing stock. We first need to consider whether we can re-use a site before it gets knocked down.
Affordability was a key consideration for this project, in both the building process and for the end user. Retaining and building atop the existing one bedroom units saw a great reduction in building costs as well as a reduction in building waste.
Did you know that the Australian construction industry makes a staggering 20 million tonnes of waste each year? Approximately 6 million tonnes of this goes into landfill and the rest is either recycled, illegally dumped, reused, reprocessed or stockpiled. Typically the waste includes bricks, concrete, metal, timber, plasterboard, asphalt, rock and soil.
– Adaptive reuse of existing dwellings reduced building waste
– Reuse of existing brickwork
– High performance glazing
– High performance wall, floor and ceiling insulation
– Use of natural ventilation
– Ample natural light lessens use of artificial lighting
Our challenge was to provide an articulated outcome that would sit comfortably in a very suburban context. Materials were chosen for their textural qualities, and skillion roofs used as part of the project ‘fitting in’ to the neighbourhood context.
The resulting built forms consist of predominantly sheer two-storey walls that retain the existing brickwork from the original dwellings. Texture and colour became important devices, providing linking elements between the ground and first floor, tying these old and new elements together.
Nadine is the founder and editor of Eco Edition and founder of the Eco Edition Design School. She’s an experienced interior designer, sustainable materials consultant, speaker and serial home renovator.