Nightingale 1

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  • 2018

  • Architectural Design
    Commercial and Residential

Designed By:

  • Design Team - Breathe Architecture
  • Landscape architects - Oculus/ Openwork
  • Sub-Consultants - Breathe Architecture with advisory services by Hip V Hype, Nick Bishop ESD with Hip V Hype Sustainability, Hansen Partnership, Metro Building Surveying, Form Structures, Lucid Consulting, Thomas Nicolas, Arup, Morris Access Consulting, Dekkerspec, Leigh Design, Webster & Peter Rickard, Peter Ramsay & Assoc./ Compass Environmental.

Commissioned By:

Nightingale on Florence

Designed In:

Australia

Homes built for people, not profit. Nightingale 1 is the inaugural project of the Nightingale Model – a replicable, triple bottom line housing model with an overarching priority towards social, economic and environmental sustainability. At it’s heart, Nightingale is all about people. Its architecture serves as a catalyst to building community.


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  • This is old Brunswick, it’s industrial, run down, yet there exists a strangely endearing quality of this area - it’s people, it’s sense of community. It is a melting pot of migrant activity, everyone coming together to form one totally imperfect community. The biggest challenge for Nightingale 1 was approvals. The project was held up due to non-provision of onsite car parking. As architects we face these frustrations often. The increase in legal fees, holding and construction costs during such delays, challenged our efforts to improve affordability and quality design outcomes.

  • Nightingale’s form is a response to Brunswick’s industrial heritage. Planning was kept simple. Materiality took precedence over form. Purchaser engagement from early stages allowed the building to be designed with the end user in mind. Lift lobbies are lined in natural Blackbutt timber battens, mild steel plate with coir matting signalling apartment entries. Apartments have a soft palette of recycled timber floors, off-form concrete and exposed services. The rooftop is about community, it’s about the utility of living and people coming together - an outdoor dining room and a rooftop lawn area for the Nightingale children to run and play.

  • Nightingale’s ground floor is about engagement between its residents, the street and the wider Brunswick community. Tenancies are occupied by organisations with similarly aligned values - Nightingale housing, Home.one and Branch Studio Architects. Seating nooks and a semi public laneway work hard to activate the space. Apartments are affordable, sustainable, generous, easy to live in, and light filled. Nightingale 1 is filled with great neighbours - home to individuals, couples and families. Accommodating all ages without limit, you can grow old here. Nightingale is about building a place to love and call home, a place to build community.

  • Nightingale is exceptional in its sustainability outcomes. Key to the sustainability strategy was to build more with less, adopting an honest material palette and emphasising reduction. Importantly, It is the first building in the country to be connected under an embedded network that is 100% fossil fuel free. Nightingale is carbon neutral in its operation - no gas. We designed the building, the electrical reticulation, the owners corporation rules and the embedded network and metering systems and the metering and sharing of the solar so that every Nightingale resident receives 100% green power. Nightingale includes: Passive principles achieving an average 8.2 stars Parking for 42 bicycles Car Share Rooftop gardens Shared rooftop laundry Natural light and ventilation to all bedrooms Shared 18kW PV array Shared solar hot water system Shared hydronic heating boiler Re-use of rainwater for irrigation, laundry and shared amenities Recycled timber floors Exposed concrete structure Formply joinery Concrete bench tops Hydronic heating Double glazed, thermally broken windows Nightingale excludes: Car parking Air-conditioning Second bathrooms Individual laundries Plasterboard ceilings Chrome Toxic finishes Nightingale’s achievement as a triple bottom line building that is sustainable, affordable and community focused is exemplified through admiring residents interaction on its communal rooftop.