Bates Smart, Smart Design Studio design first towers in carbon neutral precinct | ArchitectureAU
Bates Smart and Smart Design Studio have designed the first two towers for a nine-building residential centre planned near the new Norwest Metro Station in Sydney’s Hills Shire.
The masterplan for the development, known as Norwest Quarter, calls for “nine slender residential towers of varying heights and shapes, with large separation distances between buildings and an expansive ground plane for landscaping and amenity.”
Stage 1 of the project will see the delivery of Building B, a 14-storey tower designed by Smart Design Studio containing 81 apartments, and Building C, a 24-storey building designed by Bates Smart with 115 apartments.
Each building will also include retail and hospitality tenancies at the ground level connecting to the public domain.
Aspect Studios is leading the landscape design, while Terroir and environmental sustainability firm Finding Infinity are also working on the project.
Building B by Smart Design Studio will be located on the western-most portion of the site and will act as the gateway building to the precinct. Its overall building mass will be split down the centre to create distinct slender parallel forms connected by a central corridor, providing natural light, views and ventilation.
“These parallel forms slide in opposite north-south directions, reducing the building mass, and bringing them into overall alignment with Spurway Drive to the north and Solent Circuit to the south,” the firm notes.
Perimeter balconies with solid horizontal balustrades will provide repetition and modulation along the building’s facades.
“Bold angled blades rise vertically up the tower form, articulating the façade whilst managing views, privacy and the sun,” Smart Design Studio notes. “At top, these blades terminate in a series of connected concave roof forms which reach up to the sky.”
Bates Smart’s design for Building C features an open expression of colonnades, expressed frames and external shading, which work to unite the residential tower and podium.
The firm explains that the facade design has been conceived as an abstraction of selected indigenous plant species endemic to the locality. “Subtle shades of green and grey have been selected in reference to the subtly varying colours in the leaves, bark and flowers of local tree species such as the Spotted Gum, Grey Box and Narrow-Leaved Ironbark. Each of these species signifies an adaptation to the climatic conditions of the site, which has also informed technical aspects of the facade design.”
The $1 billion development is intended to be carbon neutral. Developer Mulpha submitted a development application to Hills Shire Council in mid-2021, and updated plans were submitted in October.