News & Insights
Carlton’s turn of the century terraces and well-to-do mansions have long attached a sense of prestige to the 3053 postcode. In recent years the cityside suburb has also become something of a hotspot for downsizers keen to nab an apartment amid the heritage architecture.
And it’s this architecture that’s inspired the design team behind the new apartment complex Argyle Sq on Cardigan Street.
The facade of the development refers to more than one type of housing in the area, says architect Andrew Norbury of Metier3.
“People like Carlton for a variety of reasons, and there’s no doubt that the architecture is one of those reasons, so it would be stupid to put a spaceship in the streetscape,” he says.
“The vertical breakup of the building is unquestionably because the row houses have a vertical breakup, and the street wall – which is four storeys high – is unquestionably because the tallest terrace houses are about the height of a modern four-storey building.
“And we’re using brickwork, particularly down the lanes, so those materials, even though they’re not the same colour or size, are making a reference to the brick buildings in Carlton.”
The facade has a solid concrete finish chosen to give the exterior colour and character, Norbury explains.
“We’ve used concrete because it’s got a texture and an honesty to it,” he says.
“Covering it up in aluminium is probably the standard practice, but we’ve chosen a precast concrete element, which has a pigment in the concrete.
“It has a different reading to an aluminium clad facade, so it’s got more texture.”
The lobby is the showpiece of the nine-story building. With a wrought-iron gate, a series of arched passageways and European-style finishes, it creates a definite sense of entrance.
Carlton’s universities and schools inspired the interior design of the lobby to include a library with wall-to-wall bookshelves and plush lounges.
Shared spaces give residents of the 79 apartments a variety of spaces in which to unwind or entertain. They include a steam room, infrared sauna, cinema and co-shared office space.
There are convenient extras such as two parcel lockers, including one that’s refrigerated to store food deliveries.
Argyle Sq has been designed with laneways giving access to Swanston Street, making getting around Carlton even easier. They come in addition to proximity to so many iconic venues – 750 metres to the Royal Exhibition Building and Carlton Gardens, 1.2 kilometres to the city and just 700 metres to the nearest tram stop.