You & I Exterior. Image courtesy of ICD Property

ICD Property delivers its first project: YOU & I

Having commenced construction during July 2013 with Urban Melbourne present at the ground breaking ceremony, this month saw the first residents of ICD Property's YOU & I development begin moving in which also marks the developer's first completed apartment development in Melbourne.

Located along one of Melbourne’s most iconic streetscapes, YOU & I at 450 Smith Street Collingwood consists of 63 apartments designed by Orbit Solutions. Urban Melbourne toured the recently completed building with ICD Property Director of Operations and Development Manager, Sal Quah, who said the team was thrilled to deliver its first project in its expanding development portfolio.

We’ve had a busy few years and are pleased to see all of our efforts come to life through the completion of YOU & I where buyers have been quick to recognize our vision in creating developments that contribute to Australia’s urban fabric.

YOU & I is just one chapter completed of the ICD Property story with a series of developments underway including Eq. Tower and our latest collaborative project, Maple in Hawthorn, with Melbourne developer, ANGLE also completely sold out.

Sal Quah

ICD recognised the potential of Collingwood as an emerging and desirable suburb due to the popularity of Smith Street and its restaurants, cafes, boutique shops and retail outlets which are considered some of the best in Melbourne. As a result YOU & I is one of the first larger scale residential developments to be built on Smith Street, acting as a visual landmark, particularly when approaching from the north.

The building represents one of the suburb’s largest residential gentrification projects along the famed Smith Street shopping strip, and we are pleased to breathe new life into this emerging Melbourne suburb.

Considered as one of Melbourne’s most exciting and highly coveted new lifestyle precincts, its little surprise the response we have received in the project from buyers and the local Collingwood community alike.

Sal Quah

With Collingwood once famed for its local artisan residents during the 60s, 70s and 80s, the project team strived to assemble the best collaborators in order to design a development that would contribute to Collingwood’s unique character.

YOU & I has integrated a selection of artworks from local Melbourne artist, Steve Rosendale, turning what would be an otherwise static and blank façade into a visually interesting storyboard which alludes to and draws upon Collingwood's eclectic and artistic history.

Rosendale has created five custom, larger-than-life stencil-style artworks which adorn the façades, referencing the retro and underground cinematic culture that was once synonymous with the area.

At 7-storeys tall and with significant upper level setbacks, the building features a robust base with timber highlights to soffits with a vertically expressed veil that acts to create "visual ambiguity" for the pedestrian. Residents will have access to the communal terrace located on level three of the development which opens out and holds views over Smith Street and back towards the Melbourne CBD skyline.

The setback was employed to alleviate planning concerns about the height and bulk of the building to the street.

The upper veiled volume setback from Smith Street. Image courtesy ICD Property.

The now fully sold apartments feature soft, neutral interiors with quality fittings and finishes used throughout, with buyers offered a selection of either a light or dark colour palette. Kitchens feature stone benchtops and Miele appliances with apartment afforded ample daylight coupled with generous ceiling heights, giving even the smaller apartments a spacious feel.

Bathrooms feature concealed in-wall cistern and chevron-patterned tiling that tie in with the contemporary look and feel of the apartments.

A typical one bedroom apartment. Image courtesy ICD Property,

Sustainability has been considered and included within the building's design via a grey water harvesting system and solar panels that contribute to the building’s energy needs whilst reduce hot water bills.

A ground floor retail tenancy fronting Smith Street has been reserved for a potential café or restaurant space to be occupied with the option to also accommodate multiple smaller tenancies. The tenancy appears to float above the street with planting beds sitting below the projecting plates. Operable windows allow the space to open up to the street and allow for passive surveillance and visual interaction with the action along Smith Street.

Residents access the building via an entry lobby off Mater Street that also accommodates the mailboxes and can also be accessed from the basement car parking level which features triple height car stackers per parking bay and a bicycle storage area. Storage cages are located within a mezzanine level that has been created as a result of the basement's double height space.

YOU & I Entry lobby. Image courtesy ICD Property.

Key facts

  • Address: 450 Smith Street, Collingwood
  • Developer: ICD Property
  • Architect: Orbit Architecture
  • Builder: Harris HMC
  • Number of apartments: 63 (28 x 1 bedroom apartments and 35 x 2 bedroom apartments)
  • Sizes of apartments in square metres internally:
    • 1 bed 1 bath apartment size 40.3-62.6 m2 (Internal)
    • 2 bed 1 bath apartment size 61.3 m2 (Internal)
    • 2 bed 2 bath apartment size 63.8-86.9 m2(Internal)
  • Who is buying: 50% owner occupier, 50% investor
  • Prices:
    • 1 bedroom apartments from $385,000-418,000
    • 2 bedroom / 1 bathroom apartments from $519,000-580,000
    • 2 bedroom / 2 bathroom apartments from $530,000-680,000


Bilby's picture

"... referencing the retro and underground cinematic culture that was once synonymous with the area". This is a joke, I'm assuming? Which "underground" culture does the artwork reference? It looks more like a set of mainstream advertising billboards.

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Nicholas Harrison's picture

Wow, that it harsh. Maybe that paragraph could have been worded better but Steven Rosendale is a very well regarded local artist and the developers should be congratulated for using artists from the local community.

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johnproctor's picture

he might be well regarded but when I speak to people in the area about the development they think the art is tacky (I live in the backstreets nearby)

meanwhile the thing I dislike most about this development is the way the retail space 'floats above the street'. what is wrong with just being able to walk from footpath straight into a shop? lazy matching of levels? cheap way to avoid an extra half metre of excavation? ANNOYING.

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greg's picture

You know what's ANNOYING? the way people who are not professionals in the development industry make flippant comments like "lazy matching of levels? seriously? do you have any idea the amount of work that goes into bringing a development from land through to completion?
"cheap way to avoid an extra half a meter of excavation?"
the cost to remove that extra meter of waste alone would be 5 if not 6 figures depending on what the ground condition is, then on top of that you have the engineering, the concrete and steel cost as well as depth of piles holding the road and the surrounding sites out of the basement.

i know people think developers are all loaded and have an easy time of it but the truth is a meter could be the difference between good and bad margin when all is said and done.
lets just say that whatever reason the development is not at street level will be a good one.

and as far as art is concerned, it is meant to be subjective, to create a discussion.


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johnproctor's picture

^ thanks Greg. I'm glad you gave a very detailed explanation of the issue 'whatever reason the development is not at street level will be a good one'

you have provided no more information than I did in my comment on the development. I stand by the comment that it is fucking annoying that the devleopment doesn't match into the street level. As a shopper in this area I do not like the feeling of being 'blocked out' of entering shops and the design makes me less likely to use the shops in this building.

The article suggests this will end up as a cafe or restaurant... will they have streetside dining? if they do the people on the street will feel very isolated from the venue and the wait staff are going to love walking in/out of the little entries down to footpath level (and craning their necks to have a look).

But as long as the developer made an extra 1% margin then I suppose I should just shutup and live with it. I'm guessing a $30-40 million development probably has some tolerance to 6 figure costs... slightly different to you or I building a single house somewhere.

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johnproctor's picture

also. while I don't work in property development I do work in Civil infrastructure and know quite a bit about excavation and matching levels.

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Bilby's picture

100% agree with Johnproctor here - the change in level from street to "ground" floor is incredibly poor / annoying design. I'm surprised council found it an acceptable response to the street at all. Walking past, the building really fails in its interaction with shoppers and passers by. Also, I stand by my comments on the "art" and can also attest that locals (including local artists) find it completely ruins their experience of this section of the street. The art installation on the corner of the Republic Tower at least allows for the art pieces to change from month to month - with its schlocky exterior, this building will just continue to disappoint for years to come.

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Melbourne_Fragments's picture

it really does look very much like the consultations went,
"oh it's in collingwood, better put some random graphic design of something generically trendy on the facade so they don't notice it's a boring box, then we can claim it's arty and edgy and sell those words with it while we price actually artists out of the area and demolish their studios for more edgy apartments"

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osoenoz's picture

Re 'floating retail'...what about flood levels?

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johnproctor's picture

^ yep flood levels is the only thing I can think of that would justify the need for a 'floating retail'. just checked the plannign scheme and its in a Special Building Overlay which means its an area prone to overland flow flooding (i.e. not 1/100 year flooding of a rising river/creek as there isn't one nearby but just an area known to flood)

So they did need to do something here but the very stark way they've treated the frontage to respond to that is terrible. theres about a foot high concrete wall then about a metre high metal fence above that with hedge planting so you pretty much can't see into the ground floor of the development from ground height. When I first saw the way they'd treated it I thought they had built ground floor apartments and it was all privacy screening, but there is only one poky little entrance so that didn't make a great deal of sense.

Seriously 1 door width access to the building along a 30m frontage to Smith Street and no access aside from the residential lobby from Mater Street (which is a 40m frontage)... Is this a 'major activity centre' or the sidestreet development in some suburban shopping centre like Ashburton.

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Bilby's picture

Yes, very true - there certainly isn't going to be any "major activity" happening for the unfortunate retailers / cafes under "You and I" given this design approach!

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Matt J's picture

The site's in a Special Building Overlay. Melbourne Water dictated the floor levels.

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Bilby's picture

The floor levels are not the problem - the problem is the poor interface with the street. As Johnproctor says, the street frontage is basically a barrier to the shops behind. The floor level could have been set higher behind steps up to the new finished floor level, for instance, with shopfront glass right on street level.

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