Carlton Warehouse

Carlton Warehouse

A house built within a picturesque industrial ruin.

Traditional Land Owners: Wurundjeri People
Builder: Clearview Construction
Photography: Derek Swalwell

Habitus #29 - Oct/Dec 2015
Belle Australia - April 2016

Conceptually, this is a house built within a picturesque ruin, the formal expression is composed of fragments of masonry which recall industrial uses and which obscure conventional domestic tropes. The approach is suggested by the particularities of the site, a former industrial building in an eclectic residential Carlton Street. Despite being an oddity in terms of scale and expression, the remnant industrial building sits comfortably due to the patina of age and familiarity. 

The somewhat conventional program is expressed as a complex of forms and elements in a garden and privileges the experience of the user. Particular attention is paid to the arrangement of space in a spiralling organisation. Specifically this is to add richness and complexity to the singular volume, to unfold internal and external space in a controlled narrative and to expand the experience of vertical circulation theatrically – heightening anticipation as each new space and volume appears. The climax is reached in the principal living area on the top floor where the views then expand out to the distance.

The quality of space is enlivened through celebrating inherent textures, the unmediated expression of structure and the elimination of superfluous elements.  The result is a building which though not inexpensive, deploys the construction budget in robust, long lasting and low maintenance materials.