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AHV Reservoir

Type
Multi-Residential
Completion
2022

Builder
Bowden Corp

Visualisations
Breathe

Photography
Kate Longley

Aboriginal Housing Victoria (AHV), a community-led organisation managing over 1,500 rental properties for Aboriginal and Torres Strait people in Victoria, embodies the strength and resilience of First Nations People. This strength exists despite inadequate access to affordable and appropriate housing. An issue which is complex and multi-faceted, rooted in dispossession and dislocation and one that requires action beyond architectural intervention alone. First Nations Peoples are disproportionately impacted by: housing market failure; family violence and breakdown; institutionalisation; poverty of household material resources; and a lack of culturally appropriate mainstream housing services. 

Recognising the need to significantly increase the amount of their available housing stock, AHV engaged Breathe to design their first multi-residential social housing project. AHV has been a strong guide throughout this process, providing clear direction on culturally appropriate design. 

The brief was to challenge the tradition of exclusively reserving large single dwellings to meet housing needs, recognising its limitations in an urban context. Instead, the brief poses an experiment in offering a variety of housing stock to the large First Nations population in Reservoir. On a site that connects its residents to good amenity through proximity to public transport, job opportunities and community services. In particular, the Aboriginal Community Services precinct on Bell Street and the wider connection to community was a key siting consideration for AHV.

The project comprises 14 one- and two-bedroom apartments that are to be built to support AHV’s vision: “ensuring Aboriginal Victorians secure appropriate, affordable housing as a pathway to better lives and stronger communities”. Breathe approached this vision with rigour to deliver a high-quality building, embedded with sustainable design principles and cultural sensitivity. High standards maintained by the project team (including all consultants) enabled us to work with agility to take this project from concept design through planning to tender in an eleven-months period. The City of Darebin’s support of the project through the planning approval process was integral to this outcome and reinforces the importance of government prioritising projects like this to address issues of homelessness.

Our thanks to Brickworks for generously donating materials for this project.

We acknowledge the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation, the Traditional Custodians of the land upon which AHV Reservoir stands. We recognise their continuing connection to land, waters, and culture.

Awards
Press/Media

AHV Reservoir

Aboriginal Housing Victoria (AHV), a community-led organisation managing over 1,500 rental properties for Aboriginal and Torres Strait people in Victoria, embodies the strength and resilience of First Nations People. This strength exists despite inadequate access to affordable and appropriate housing. An issue which is complex and multi-faceted, rooted in dispossession and dislocation and one that requires action beyond architectural intervention alone. First Nations Peoples are disproportionately impacted by: housing market failure; family violence and breakdown; institutionalisation; poverty of household material resources; and a lack of culturally appropriate mainstream housing services. 

Recognising the need to significantly increase the amount of their available housing stock, AHV engaged Breathe to design their first multi-residential social housing project. AHV has been a strong guide throughout this process, providing clear direction on culturally appropriate design. 

The brief was to challenge the tradition of exclusively reserving large single dwellings to meet housing needs, recognising its limitations in an urban context. Instead, the brief poses an experiment in offering a variety of housing stock to the large First Nations population in Reservoir. On a site that connects its residents to good amenity through proximity to public transport, job opportunities and community services. In particular, the Aboriginal Community Services precinct on Bell Street and the wider connection to community was a key siting consideration for AHV.

The project comprises 14 one- and two-bedroom apartments that are to be built to support AHV’s vision: “ensuring Aboriginal Victorians secure appropriate, affordable housing as a pathway to better lives and stronger communities”. Breathe approached this vision with rigour to deliver a high-quality building, embedded with sustainable design principles and cultural sensitivity. High standards maintained by the project team (including all consultants) enabled us to work with agility to take this project from concept design through planning to tender in an eleven-months period. The City of Darebin’s support of the project through the planning approval process was integral to this outcome and reinforces the importance of government prioritising projects like this to address issues of homelessness.

Our thanks to Brickworks for generously donating materials for this project.

An image of a spiral-bound document
Type
Multi-Residential
Completion
2022

Builder
Bowden Corp

Visualisations
Breathe

Photography
Kate Longley

We acknowledge the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation, the Traditional Custodians of the land upon which AHV Reservoir stands. We recognise their continuing connection to land, waters, and culture.

Awards
Press/Media