Darling Square North addresses the way housing density in the city can create distinctive, memorable and active places. It explores the issue of scale and how large precinct wide projects can operate between the grand and human scale, through the design of the building and the craft of its making.
The building is part of the Darling Square Masterplan which established the public space network, as well as block scale and massing resulting in a six-story podium, a 40-story northern tower, an 8-story block defining the square and a 19-story tower. The building has 577 apartments, a retail ground floor and car parking.
The design response is derived from the project’s relationship to its context. On the grand scale and in response to significant urban conditions we developed a simple, industrial architecture of concrete and glass.
At a local scale, the architecture responds to the more incidental character of the surrounding public spaces and is informed by the legacy of brick buildings in the area. Brickwork ties the building to its place and allows the architecture to develop distinctive responses to each context while still retaining coherence. A variety of bricks are used - darker bricks for the base; white glazed bricks for entries and articulation; brown bricks for the remaining building. This brick is refined by the use of a polished version developed for the project. The interrelationship of these elements and the use of various coursing strategies provides a fine grain and level of craft.
The architecture of the building is also an expression of its planning and residential amenity. Balconies are orientated towards the northern side of apartments, living spaces pushed to the facade to maximise solar access, solid brick spandrels create privacy at the lower more public levels, while glazing opens up on the upper levels.