Southbank is uniquely placed to be a suburb that integrates an established cultural life with a diverse residential community. The proposed building, inspired by the adjacent Boyd School (an activity node), promotes a vertical community which is socially sustainable for children to grow up.
The Cultural Transcend Tower is comprised of a series of four-level [neighborhood] blocks. Through the use of lobbies instead of corridors, people of different generations can gather and interact, kids can play and seniors can garden. These four-level blocks vary into four different types (a, b, c & d) and through a 90° angle rotation, correspond to each elevation. Although similar in proportion, each block is unique and benefits from a variety of views and distinct spatial experiences.
Occupants enter their units from the lobby level on each block, with space for children, a green-house facility, and two accessible units for senior tenants. Voids, with a degree of controlled privacy, perforate each block vertically to lessen physical isolation of each unit and connect them to the lobby. This creates ambiguous natural surveillance and fosters a positive attitude and social behavior. The voids also regulates air circulation internally to the units as exterior facing windows cannot be opened due to high wind pressures at high altitudes. An integral sunroom is provided to circulate air movement and control the atmosphere and temperature of the units.
Construction cost is considered on the project as Future Melbourne, the local community plan, has established a goal for the provision of 20% affordable housing in all new developments. The proposed building is primarily constructed out of prefabricated concrete columns and prefabricated concrete flooring which minimize beam depth. The façade consists of a series of prefabricated concrete panels with various opening sizes according to typology and lighting requirements of the space behind (e.g. smaller window for a child's room, larger window for living and bedrooms, open void for sunrooms, etc). Each function of the space is expressed through variation of the openings and manifests into a visual abstraction on the facades.