Greenland Group Australia, the developers behind the recently submitted development application for 57 Ashmore Street in Erskineville, have appointed WMK Architects as their lead designers for a multi-block, mixed-use building that will enjoy the locality of one of Sydney’s biggest urban development projects.
The WMK-designed proposed development is made up of two residential apartment blocks. The first block (Block B) is eight storeys and comprises 156 apartments. The second block (Block C) is a seven-storey building with 169 apartments. The development in its entirety contains two levels of underground car parking with 232 residential and 106 retail car spaces, plus 4500 sq m of retail and commercial space and a childcare centre on the ground floor. There are food and beverage tenancies fronting McPherson Park and at the corner of Mitchell Road and Stovemaker Lane, the building’s retail and commercial tenancies will be accessed via Mitchell Road.
The proposed development’s 325 residential dwellings will be a mix of dwelling types including:
The site is within walking distance of public transport bus and rail stations. Mitchell Road provides the primary vehicle access to the precinct. The site has an abundant access to open space and public park land with the Erskineville Oval immediately north of the site, Sydney Park within walking distance, and new park proposed for the precinct adjacent to Block C.
The majority of apartments are provided with at least one balcony or courtyard directly accessed from the primary living space, and in some cases, also from bedrooms or secondary living spaces. The primary private open space has an area and configuration conducive to furnishing and recreational use, as well as providing the apartment access to ventilation.
Communal areas include a fig tree area within Block B, while Block C features a podium landscape and a roof top residents lounge, accessible to all residents. These spaces allow for group interaction and private use, which contribute to the area’s social interaction opportunities which include retail opportunities and the new public park proposed within the greater Ashmore Precinct.
In February, WMK won the contract for the proposal after Greenland Group put together a design competition where the winner was selected by a panel of industry professionals. The architecture firm was up against other firms including DKO, Kannfinch & Breakspear, Plus and Turner.
“The submission presented a well considered design approach for the ground level retail space in Block C, providing a range of appropriately sized, flexible tenancies and recognition of the opportunity to link to the future retail offering,” the panel said when critiquing WMK’s work.
“The incorporation of natural light and the quality of the communal open space above the retail in Block C was well resolved, and would not preclude the possibility of converting of this space to a community use in the future.
“The location of the childcare centre addressed the residential and public interfaces well, and created high amenity for the centre’s users. The proposed single basement access for vehicles and loading is well located and enabled Foundry Street to have a continuous activated interface with McPherson Park.
“The relationship of the building form fronting Mitchell Road including the incorporation of pocket park access into the mall was a strong design idea that increased permeability to the site and reduced the visual mass of the building fronting this street.
“The design presented the strongest resolution of an articulated building base and upper level building form.”
The architecture firm said their design draws on the contexts of two diverse neighbourhoods, melding the characteristics of the adjacent medium-rise, mixed-use apartments and fine grained terrace housing into a unified design solution.
“Pocket parks, an important feature of Alexandria and Erskineville, have been incorporated into the design,” they said.
“The centre will bring together the community with a vibrant urban marketplace, retail, cafes, and childcare facilities.”
If approved, 57 Ashmore Street will be adjacent to what will be known as the Ashmore Precinct, which is partly formed by Greenland Group’s Ashmore Industrial Estate. It is in various stages of development but will eventually become a new 17-hectare residential neighbourhood with local shops, cafés and a small supermarket. The City of Sydney predicts Ashmore will eventually be home to approximately 6000 residents, as development is staged over the next 10 years. The redevelopment will create new streets, some with separated bicycle lanes, a large central park and systems to manage stormwater.
Terraces, apartments, and live-work accommodation will be developed to help meet the housing needs of 21st century living.
Images courtesy WMK Architects.