Home of the Jaques Bros Foundry from 1885 to 1997, this industrial site was transformed into a contemporary architectural talking point, meeting increasing demand for inner-city living.
In consultation with the local community and council, Riverlee collaborated with Fender Katsalidis to preserve the foundry’s signature heritage elements. The original brick walls were retained to create the new development’s strong foundations, while a variety of scales, heights and textures complement the area’s industrial streetscapes.
The history of the site continues to be acknowledged through references to the names of former buildings, the original heritage tower, the story of legendary Richmond footballer Jack Dyer, and framed blueprints of the original foundry.
Developed across three stages, the site’s five buildings were configured as an open square around a central courtyard. The precinct’s impressive communal facilities include two gymnasiums, a rooftop terrace, two internal courtyards and a residents’ lounge. Sustainability features include a 6-star average energy rating, solar gas-boosted hot water and extensive water conservation systems.
Stage 1 of the project sold out in less than eight weeks with minimal advertising efforts, while the Stage 2 Penthouse reached a new price benchmark for Richmond at $4.8 million in 2017. The apartments subsequently sold for up to 25 per cent more than their original purchase price in response to ongoing demand.
Local buyers from within 7 kilometres of the site made up around 95 per cent of all sales, with 75 per cent being owner-occupiers – an exceptionally high proportion for a large-scale, multi-residential development.
Beyond its commercial success, Jaques has also gained respect from the local community for its careful consideration of the site’s history on Dyer Street. The precinct was officially opened in 2017 by the Minister for Planning and the City of Yarra Mayor.