Serneke Australia has signed up to be a part of the baugruppen project at LandCorp’s WGV development in White Gum Valley, WA.

Led by Geoffrey London, professor of architecture at UWA’s School of Design, this ground-breaking project is based on the successful European housing model ‘baugruppen’ (German for ‘building group’) where future owners come together to custom-design and develop their own higher density homes, resulting in well-designed, more affordable and sustainable living spaces built for the long term.

Baugruppe WGV engaged award-winning Fremantle architect Michael Patroni of spaceagency to develop the concept design of the group housing project. An application has also been made to the City of Fremantle for Development Approval.

The WGV project allows owners to prioritise their own needs when planning their individual homes while working together to design the shared spaces in a community environment.

“With no developer involved, the participants will pay approximately 10 percent below market value for their new homes,” explained London.

One of Sweden’s fastest growing construction companies with a turnover of almost a billion Australian dollars, Serneke is renowned for delivering medium and high-density developments into existing communities. Their merger with local company Consortium Builders last year was the first step in an ambitious plan to expand globally.

Serneke Australia managing director Andrew Abercromby describes the White Gum Valley project as an ideal opportunity to demonstrate how new levels of environmental and social sustainability can be built into medium-density housing projects in Perth. 

“The participants in Baugruppe WGV are a diverse group of people who will have individually-owned, private one, two and three bedroom apartments in addition to a common guest flat/ multipurpose area, community gardens and outdoor living including a barbecue area and rooftop terrace with various services such as PV power optimised for the group.”

A significant part of the work will be prefabricated offsite, allowing Serneke to reduce the construction period from the planned 15 months to less than nine months, while minimising disruption to the existing neighbours, and substantially reducing waste. Innovations in the construction process also include building to near-Passivhaus levels, ensuring a low-energy building that is comfortable year-round and much cheaper to operate than most Australian homes.