We wanted to showcase a building that was done by our studio roughly two decades ago, that is still relevant in the current architectural landscape. Ideas that were implemented in this project have subsequently been developed and refined, and still inform our practice today!
The Wellington Street Apartments, St Kilda was a project completed by B.E Architecture over 20 years ago. The building was an infill project on a vacant piece of land connecting St Kilda Road to Chapel Street, which consisted of a strip of 4 storey office buildings on one side and a collection of residential houses on the other. The project was one of the first mixed-use developments in the area that combined multi-story apartments with single level commercial suites, and were some of the first live and work home concepts in Melbourne.
The building was designed so that a light-well brings daylight into the centre of the development and the use of glass bricks offered filtered light and privacy for the inward facing units.
The façade is comprised of in-situ concrete, split face concrete bricks. The steel doors that make up the façade with the Juliette balcony handrails decrease in width as they move up the building, creating the illusion of a great sense of height. The same primary finishes seen on the outside were recreated internally and consisted of sandblasted white concrete ceilings, polished white concrete floors, dark oak veneer, and dark painted bagged walls, and the top of the building is capped with a concrete beam that contains the form.
Although completed over 20 years ago, 53 Wellington Street remains stylistically valid by embodying many of the design values that B.E and the wider architecture community still employ today.