Dock of the bay

Despite its contemporary appearance, this apartment building is a bold salute to a rich maritime heritage
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view of the redeveloped pier containg residential apartments

In its early days, Sydney's Walsh Bay was a bustling commercial port, notorious for wild drunken brawls, small-time criminals and the bubonic plague.

Today, it's quite a different story. Walsh Bay is currently being redeveloped and rejuvenated to preserve what represents the heart of Sydney's seafaring heritage. The once-derelict wharves and neglected wooden structures significant and rare examples of large-scale marine industrial architecture are being restored and rebuilt for both residential and commercial use. The partnership of Mirvac and Transfield has joined forces with the New South Wales government and various other stakeholders to ensure the renewal of the harbour foreshore is carried out successfully.

A key part of the redevelopment is Pier 6/7, a new residential pier containing 140 luxury apartments. Designed by HPA Architects with some input from Sydney architectural firm PTW, the pier sits between two restored wharves that contain a theatre and dance company to the east and offices to the west.


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view of apartments located on the pier

The main design challenge was ensuring that the new structure was sympathetic to the solid nature of the neighbouring piers, says HPA design director Malcolm Sholl.

"Both the pier and the apartments were designed to acknowledge the surrounding buildings in scale, colour, materials and forms. The materials and junctions were carefully considered to give the new apartment building its own expression, while respecting the surrounding heritage fabric."

Concrete and steel give the building's exterior its substantial form. Panels of 200mm-wide aluminium louvres replicate the precise grid of the timber boards on the adjacent Pier buildings.

view of dining area showing allum ininium cladding apartment, real estate, teal
view of dining area showing allum ininium cladding and balcony area

Apartments range from spacious maisonettes to two-storey penthouses, each with its own balcony. Signalled by a large glass canopy a centrally located health facility opens out to both the eastern and western sides of the pier via glazed doors.

For details contact Mirvac Projects (HPA), 40 Miller St, North Sydney, NSW 2060, phone (02) 9080 8888 or visit the website: www.mirvac.com.au.

Jul 18, 2003
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