32 St Georges Rd South, Fitzroy North
Situated on the traditional lands of the Wurundjeri People of the Kulin Nation, these 5 townhouses and accompanying wine bar inhabit a former pub on a corner site in North Fitzroy. Standing since the 1880’s, the project confronts the challenge of converting this iconic pub into a suitable development for the present day that respects both the material and cultural heritage of the building.
The retained corner wine bar is an acknowledgement of the literal history of the site, while the existing building’s tactility and character are retained through its façade and restored slate roofing. A complementary timber addition to the rear follows the original gabled form and is sleeved behind the existing building. This new form is clad in a spotted gum rainscreen, that while clearly contrasting, will grey and patina over time to settle as a restrained compliment to the existing façade.
The new façade design addresses the northern and western aspect of the site with the incorporation of hinged shutters, allowing for customisable solar shading control. Each townhouse contains a private rooftop terrace, some of which are carved from within the original gabled roof and restored chimneys, allowing for contemporary living within a heritage context.
Each townhouse has separate access from a centralised external laneway, taking cues from the French ruelle – the ‘narrow alley’ or ‘space between’. This planted common area provides individual entry to each dwelling and allows for interaction between residents. Internal finishes take cues from the original material palette, utilising original colours, glazed tiles and defined dado lines reinterpreted in a contemporary manner.