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Hayball's 'island' tower emerges above a wave of South Melbourne development

Thailand's famed Khao Phing Kan island is a key design driver behind design practice Hayball's latest residential tower in the public eye.

1-13 Cobden Street in South Melbourne maintains active frontages to all aspects, allowing Hayball to create a 360 degree apartment project for the site which was sold to Holder East during 2016. Handled by Lemon Baxter at the time, the sale included the potential for 238 apartments under a prospective development scheme.

Now at planning, Holder East are seeking a 19 storey tower containing 249 dwellings.

The Cobden Street site is the Collins Street-based developers second major tower in waiting in Melbourne, following on from Southbank's 56-62 Clarendon Street. In addition to a number of smaller suburban residential developments, Holder East also controls 509-525 King Street which is also likely to accommodate a substantial development.

1-13 Cobden Street, South Melbourne application summary

Design evolution. Planning image: Hayball
  • 1,886sqm site with four frontages
  • Proposed 19 level tower @ 60m in height
  • Average podium height of 41m
  • 249 apartments: 89 x 1 bed, 142 x 2 bed and 18 x 3 bed
  • 1,473 sqm of retail floor space
  • 979sqm of communal open space atop the roof
  • 234 car parking spaces & 83 bicycle spaces

Design Ethos

Along with Khao Phing Kan, Hayball have also drawn inspiration from eroded natural terraces, offering Singapore's well received PARKROYAL on Pickering as a prime design driver.

Sitting on what is an island site, with street frontages to all boundaries, the subject site presents a rare opportunity to truly design a building 'in the round.'

The proposed built form is first sculptured in plan, with a pinching in of the mid sections, whilst the corners are pulled out to hold each of the four street corners. These two moves at the same time serve to ensure that apartment modules are of appropriate depth, whilst maximising opportunity for apartment frontage and capitalising on opportunities for sunlight, daylight and views.

Drawing inspiration from natural eroded landscape forms, the green glass facade is then sculpted in elevation to reveal opportunities for balconies, and break down the mass of the building.

Hayball: Urban Context Report
1-13 Cobden Street in full. Planning image: Hayball

South Melbourne shapes up

1-13 Cobden Street is not the only recent tower to lob into the South Melbourne precinct surrounding Park Street. Reworked plans have been revealed for another tower at 9-13 Park Street, with the expectation that its developer can proceed with a 20 storey tower containing 45 apartments.

Both the above projects join an already very healthy list of projects looking to call South Melbourne home. Highlighted by Urban Melbourne earlier in the year, a multitude of towers are in the pipeline although the release of projects in this pocket of South Melbourne has been altogether controlled.

Of these, developer GURNER's Albert Place is poised to begin sales, with the project's premier residence priced at a cool $21 million.

9-13 Park Street is a new prospect. Planning image: Cornetta Partners Architects

1-13 Cobden Street, South Melbourne development team

  • Developer: Holder East
  • Architect: Hayball
  • Land Surveyor: Bosco Jonson
  • ESD: Lucid Consulting Australia
  • Landscape: LBA Design
  • Traffic: Traffix Group
  • Waste: Leigh Design
  • Project Manager: Pomeroy Pacific
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