A developer's strong environmental consciousness and the skill of a duo of architects who are both UWA graduates proved a winning combination, not once but twice.
Assistant Professor Jennie Officer, from the Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Visual Arts, and alumnus Trent Woods, have won the 2012 Harold Krantz Architecture Award for Multiple Residential and the 2012 Walter Greenham Sustainable Architecture Award.
As Officer Woods Architects, they scored both prizes for the same project - a four-home development on a lightly sloping block in a Fremantle area that is rapidly changing from light industrial to residential.
"The client's brief was underpinned by a desire for flexibility and adaptability, as well as sustainability," Professor Officer said.
"They wanted us to design houses that could be readily altered without too much structural change. We put extra plumbing and gas into the walls to allow for future options such as an extra bedroom, home office, granny flat and multi-generational living.
"We recycled as much as possible, using rammed earth from the rubble on the block as the main walls, with plantation pine frames and zincalum cladding which reflected the area's industrial past.
"The houses all have north-facing courtyards for maximum solar penetration and eaves to provide shade in summer. By polishing the concrete floors, excess finishes were kept to a minimum. The three houses that are double storey have the extra storey over garages so they don't look into the neighbours' living spaces.
"And we provided access for pedestrians on one side of the development and access for cars on the other so people don't have to watch out for vehicles."
As many of the native trees on the block as possible were retained, along with mature exotics that were transplanted. And grey water, rain water, solar arrays on the roofs and waterwise gardens add to the green credentials.
Published in UWA News, 17 September 2012