Haven in East Perth was planned and designed during the 2010 economic downturn, when many architects and developers were unsure the apartment market was financially feasible.
The project was therefore carefully value-managed throughout the design and construction phases to minimise costs, while still maintaining the quality clients expect of Hillam Architects. The right mix of affordability and amenity ensured the project’s ultimate success, as did Hillam Architects’ involvement with the builders at Diploma Construction and structural engineers at Robert Bird Group, who were engaged throughout the project to assist with providing the most cost-effective solution.
Compact plans, large balconies and a building aesthetic that allows occupants to feel that their place is unique creates a desirable and attractive living environment.
Architecturally, the project features a classic base, with the central section of the building separately articulated. The top floor is set back to maximise city views, while respecting incursions on height limits. Bulk and scale are broken down by distinct, smaller masonry elements, separated through softer, textured materials. Sustainability and maximising solar access was also a priority in the design to facilitate cross-ventilation.
The facade is finished with a mixture of materials such as acrylic render, metal screens and composite aluminium panels. To the front facade, the sculptural awnings provide a focal point to the entry. Variations in colour and texture allow these elements to be punctuated, and break down the building scale.
The design creates community involvement, with the residential lobby and three commercial tenancies addressing and activating the frontage at street level. Focal points are created through the incorporation of the sculptural canopy awning and the landscaped entry transition.
A common barbecue, swimming pool and entertaining area has been designed on the west side of the site at the podium level. This is surrounded by landscaping and incorporates a decked terrace, built-in benches and feature plantings. The space is for the use of all building occupants, and provides an area of sanctuary
from the busy city.
The cleverly designed compact, functional apartments are a mix of one- and two-bedroom dwellings designed to promote efficient use of space by reducing corridors and unused areas. They also address the changing nature of accommodation requirements, encouraging residents to interact with others in the building while using the communal facilities.
ARCHITECT | Hillam Architects
BUILDER | Diploma Construction
BRIEF | The project has been conceived as a high-quality development, which aims to depart from the formula of ‘basic’ investment apartments. Affordability was a major factor, as it had to appeal to entry-level owner occupiers as well as those who rent.
LOCATION | 39-45 Wickham Street, East Perth