The Gertrude Street apartment building is a new type of small apartment specifically designed for the elderly and those needing assistance with daily life. This project has resulted from a joint ARC-funded Linkage Project led by Monash University Urban Lab with Housing Choices Australia. NMBW partnered with Monash to deliver the detailed design component.
The building establishes a replicable and affordable model for fully accessible apartment accommodation suited to typical middle-suburban sites. By working carefully with regulatory principles and construction techniques, a simple but generous floorplate for each dwelling is achieved. Internal spaces are large and simple, warehouse-like spaces able to be easily adapted and personalised to occupants needs. Each apartment has a generous outdoor room/ terrace and accessible bathrooms with natural light, ventilation and views – benefiting not only the resident but also the carers who spend long hours in these spaces. The design aims to provide dignified, affordable and liveable spaces for a group of residents who spend much of their time at home, and emphasises spaces for planting and gardening at a variety of scales to foster a sense of community.