Terrace House is a beautifully-designed, highly sustainable and 100% fossil-fuel free building in Melbourne. Comprising of 20 residences, Terrace House takes a revolutionary approach to housing and delivers community-focused, environmentally, socially and financially sustainable homes, that are robust and resilient in the face of the growing climate crisis.
Terrace House seeks to be a positive example of good urbanism; tackling the housing affordability crisis, focusing on deliberative design over profit, and working together with residents (at a very early stage in development) to inform the outcome and help them author their collective future. Together with the support, belief and funding of past clients and allies, and at huge personal risk to the directors and team members, the practice adopted the role of both architect and developer - to create homes focused on long-term liveability, where ongoing costs were a priority, not an afterthought.
Terrace House fills a much needed gap in the Australian housing market. Relatively affordable, good quality homes, in an engaged community, close to the city, with super-low running costs, and without the constant demands for maintenance and poor thermal performance of a typical terrace house. Terrace House has a 6-star Green Star rating considered to be world leading and equivalent to ‘Platinum’ LEED and BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ classification. In Australia, multi residential buildings are require to achieve 6 stars within the building code certification method. Terrace House has a rating of 8.1.
“One of us is a public servant, the other is a school teacher. In our income bracket options for home ownership are limited to cookie-cutter suburban sprawl with a lengthy commute to work, or an inner city shoebox not suited to raising children. Terrace House has given us peace of mind that we can live car-free and carefree in a 20 minute neighbourhood, close to all the amenities we need, and that we will be able to raise our children in a stable community of owner-occupiers that, like us, values equitable outcomes, environmental sustainability and great design.” Paula Hanasz, resident
Located on a busy high street, close to all amenities, the building comprises of 20 (two and three bedroom) residences, with 55 bike parks and three commercial spaces. Intended as owner-occupier, Terrace House is the re-imagining of a former inner-city suburban life, where rows of workers cottages generated and nurtured close community. Shared childminding, communal gardens, neighbourly lending and borrowing - these ideals are the basis of Terrace House. These are not apartments but terrace houses, stacked six storeys high. The average Australian home measures 233m2 and is, typically, poorly designed, high maintenance and inefficient in terms of space and energy. By contrast, small inner-city apartment buildings seek to maximise returns, using saddlebacks, compromising bedrooms and facing homes inward, towards each other. Austin Maynard Architects believe homes should have an aspect out from the site, into the surroundings, and to the sky. Responding to this unique site (a long block measuring 10m x 57m) the practice took the opportunity to emulate traditional terrace house plans. Homes with big external outlooks, a front verandah, a study and a shared ‘backyard' on the roof.