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548 Stradbrook - Condominium

5468796 Architecture

548 Stradbrook - Condominium
By Caterina Testa -

Lined with 100-year elms, Stradbrook Avenue is a quiet residential street of detached timber houses surrounded by gardens and not far from an historic brick church, the symbolic centre of the community.
This sequence of houses, old trees and private gardens has been disrupted by a reflective glass-panelled block, which although in part camouflaged by the mirrored images of its surrounds, is in decided contrast to the Stradbook Avenue urban model.
With the 548 Stradbrook Condominiums project, 5468796 Architecture inserts a completely different urban residential model into this leafy suburb - one based on higher density and greater space constraints than in the past. In a broader perspective, this translates into more concentrated cities, less land occupation and more shared community spaces.
Yet although profoundly different from its neighbours, the new project still responds to local urban-planning guidelines. The break with the past is more visible on the inside.
The four-storey block has a setback top floor in compliance with the alignment and proportions of its next-door neighbours. It contains 8 dwelling units. The six flats are all generally the same size and layout, with a day zone, double bedroom and spare room to be used as required. The two 2-level loft units are more spacious. Although compact every unit has an outlook. The portico gives direct access to the ground floor apartments. The first-floor dwellings are served by two niches, while the top-floor maisonettes have large roof terraces.
Although built from completely different materials to its neighbours, the new volume nonetheless harks back to local architectural traditions. The glass panels are overlaid like fish scales both vertically and horizontally in the lap-siding tradition of timber shingle houses. Entirely wrapped in reflective glass mirroring neighbouring houses and trees, the new building is discreetly evanescent. Although a community area, the portico anchors...

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