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Chapter 01 - On the Philosophy of Living

-Michael Prakash & Matthew Sales
Chinese Gardens
Darling Harbour, NSW

Capturing the essential philosophy of the east, in the heart of the west...

The Chinese gardens at Darling Harbour provide a place of spiritual reflections that is so significant in the east. An insight into the philosophy of living within eastern cultures is characterised in these gardens.

Chinese Gardens, Darling Harbour

Chapter 02 - On Formalism

- Matthew Sales & Aditya Kristianto Njonoriswondo
Silos Apartment Project
TZG Architects
Newtown, NSW

The way that the two geometries intersect and ‘play’ with each other in plan compliment and emphasise the overall form of the building form. The careful juxtaposition between circle and square contributes to the success of the building.

Silos Apartment Project

Chapter 03 - On Structuralism

Katy Boustead and Ma Pui Sze

Sirius Appartments
Alexander and Lloyd Group (1960s)
The Rocks, NSW


Chapter 05 - On Flexible Spaces and Modularity

Mathew Manos and Nathalie Santamaria

Precedent: CarriageWorks
CarriageWorks is a multi-venue centre focused on the creation and presentation of contemporary art and culture. CarriageWorks is housed in the old Eveleigh Rail Yards, located within the emerging Redfern Waterloo precinct, and has been developed by the NSW State Government through Arts NSW. It has been transformed into an innovative new centre committed to the conception, development and presentation of a wide spectrum of performance. Tonkin Zulaikha Greer’s adaptive reuse of the building as the CarriageWorks Contemporary Arts Centre has embraced the building’s past whilst providing it with a bold new future.

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Chapter 05 - On Flexible Spaces and Modularity

Jessica Hartany & Angelina Le

Precedent 1: Australian Technology Park (ATP)
ATP precinct adopts similar design philosophy as Carriageworks in creating a multi-purpose centre and community facilities that facilitate flexibility, through its adaptive reuse and respect for heritage railway buildings and historic layout. The versatile technology and business park encourages resident companies to network and collaborate, and "feature a unique integration of heritage architecture, premium commercial space and state-of-the-art conferencing facilities".
(Source: ATP's website -

Precedent 2: 146 Boundary Street, Paddington NSW 2021
The Adaptive Re-use Architecture Award winner Smart Design Studio's Boundary Street extension project has converted six out of the ten studio apartments into two bedroom apartments. The architect describes the transformation as 'book-ends' extension as the new extensions are added to each end of the block of units.
(Source: Smart Design Studio -

Chapter 07 - On Size

Meriton Serviced Apartments - World Tower
95 Liverpool Street (between George & Pitt Streets)

The luxury apartments at Meriton World Tower are an international standard of its own. The apartments incorporate the latest design principles, catering for the complete luxury modern life. Between 1, 2 and 3 bedrooms. The apartments include every modern convenience, including study rooms and media alcoves, individually controlled air-conditioning and wiring for the TV and high speed internet access.

The advertising on the Meriton website describes the apartments as ‘oversized’ emphasizing the ‘oversized’ living area . The usage of the key term ‘oversized’ in apartment advertising highlights Australia’s obsession with size. In Japan, the term ‘oversized’ living room would be considered a waste of space and bad design; here in Australia it is celebrated and used as a key advertising device.


Chapter 07 - On Size

Public housing towers in waterloo

Waterloo has been a relatively poor area, until recent times. It is still dominated by public housing estates for those on low-incomes, which were built in the second half of the 20th century by the New South Wales Department of Housing. Today, despite some social problems in some parts of the suburb, Waterloo is undergoing gentrification with a rising business district focusing on technology-oriented firms and the development of more green space such as parks.

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Chapter 10 - Urban Agriculture and Planting

Jessica Hartany & Angelina Le

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A suitable site in Sydney which explores the concept of Vertical Urban Agriculture and Planting has yet to be developed.

A video from the Discovery Channel investigating this concept can be viewed at;

Smaller scale ventures into urban agriculture are however being initiated by local community groups.

Myrtle St, Chippendale NSW

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Michael Mobbs is a local Chippendale resident well known for his self-sustainable home.
Concerned about food miles he began planting fruit trees on the grass verge outside his home.
Three city blocks are lined with vegetables, herbs and fruit trees.
It invites passersby to eat any food they want and states, "These plants are provided by local residents for anyone - we need to grow food where we live and work,"

Chapter 12 - On What Makes a Neighbourhood Vibrant

Mathew Manos and Ben Yee
Precedent: King Street, Newtown

King Street is Newtown’s great public asset and its strongest urban element—a fine-grained and sinuous retail. It is a socially diverse, public promenade, serviced by two train lines (Newtown and Erskineville stations) and multiple bus routes. Newtown’s main road, King Street, was the first suburban shopping centre outside the City Centre, and today this thoroughfare is still a shoppers’ mecca – lined with hundreds of stores, cafes and restaurants.


Chapter 13 - On Building Typologies

Sohan Saraf and Sandra Ahlen

Burwood Road
Burwood, NSW

Burwood Road is a good example of mixed used small-scale development. The mixture of uses helps create a vibrant housing environment.

Chapter 14 - On Housing Market and Economics

41/230 Elizabeth St
Surry Hills, NSW
location: 41-230 Elizabeth Street Surry Hills1.pdf

One of the cheapest apartments currently available in Surry Hills.
1 Bedroom with 1 Bathroom on Level 4 with an asking price of $279,000


Chapter 16 - On Procurement Methods

3A Gladstone Rd Newtown
Property built on the back of a suburban block.
The total property area is 75sqm and almost a perfect parallelogram. Council approved an unrivalled floor space ratio for a single residence of 2:1.
. It was built using concrete panels (8 panels, 3 storeys each) which informed all the construction detailing - the building was built as a kit of parts with minimal on-site carpentry required.
. The construction process was streamlined - the walls and all the framing went up in a week - the crane arrived on Monday and the roof framing was complete by Friday.
The ground floor is adaptable and can be used as an office space (currently housing the office of ROOM-E), a small gallery or two bedrooms and a garage - intermediate walls move to facilitate this, the walls are effectively 3.5m wide hinged doors.


Chapter 17 - Ownership Modes

Addison Rd Marrickville

Addison Rd Community Centre- Co op servicing Marrickville suburb

Chapter 11- Advanced Material Studies

30 The Bond located at Hickson Road in Sydney. 30

The Bond is a leading example of social and environmental sustainability within commercial objectives and is the first CBD office building in Australia to commit to a 5 star energy rating with lower CO2 emissions than a typical office building. This has been achieved through the use of natural ventilation, passive chilled beam cooling and fully operable shading on the facades. Materials used reflect the local environment and maritime heritage with oxidised steel, recycled wharf timbers and patinated copper.
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Chapter 8 - Minimised Spaces

Belmore Lane Surry Hills

There are no separate rooms, corridors or doors - but rather sliding walls that can be moved into and out of position and an internal staircase that enables light to pass through each floor. ''Perhaps this is where Sydney needs to go,'' the architect and future resident of the house, Domenic Alvaro, said.


Chapter 6 - On Varying Density

Paddington Terrace Houses on Underwood St (Medium Density)

Sydney CBD (High Density)

Chapter 17 - On Ownership Modes

Sense of belonging in a area

Chapter 18 - On Fugliness Emma Potts + Ophelia Leung

The renowned "Blues Point Tower" by Harry Seidler.