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    Creative concrete and louvre track technology aid Tony Owen Partners at The Castlereagh, Sydney

    209 Castlereagh St Sydney NSW 2000

    Forming a gateway to Sydney’s CBD and Hyde Park, The Castlereagh by Tony Owen Partners (TOP) unapologetically utilises angled concrete window boxes and distinctive bronzed-coloured louvres to respond to, yet separate itself from, the varied mix of vibrant building designs forming the block.

    The brief for the development was to provide inner city apartments of a high standard, yet affordable in the market. The building’s design itself was constructed to take advantage of the views from Bathurst Street to Hyde Park, as well as mimic its bustling inner city context. It contains five levels of office and retail space, and eleven levels of studio to three bedroom apartments.

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    Forming a gateway to Sydney's CBD and Hyde Park, The Castlereagh stands on the corner of Bathurst and Castlereagh Streets. Image: Tony Owen Partners

    One of the most noticeable features of the sixteen-storey building is the five level podium made predominantly of precast concrete. Chosen to reflect on a number of surrounding buildings in the precinct, Tony Owen Partners put their own take on the material by creating angled widow boxes to maximise sun penetration and create a stark modelling in sunlight. This articulation creates a particular contemporary expression which helps the building differentiate itself from the tight-knit neighbouring buildings, while still helping remain consistent with other developments.

    Within the five-level concrete podium lies a six sqm atrium that also doubles as a ventilation shaft. The shaft provides natural ventilation to the units while drawing out hot air.

    Tony Owen, Director of TOP explained that the project’s biggest challenge was burdened by the construction team who were tasked with creating his intricate concrete window boxes. In the end the team opted for a combination of in-situ and pre-cast elements. The horizontal elements were made in pre-cast panels and installed first, and the verticals were then in-situ poured around them, which evidently resulted in the seamless frame that is present on the building’s facade.

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    The five-level concrete podium Image: Tony Owen Partners

    Moving up from the concrete podium, TOP clad majority of the upper levels in adjustable, copper-toned, metal louvres. The screens not only provide shade to reduce heat load and increase privacy for occupants, but they also create an animated, urban mosaic patterning on the multi-residential levels.

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    The adjustable bronzed-coloured louvres outline the residential levels. Image: Tony Owen Partners

    The adjustability of the mosaic-textured louvres allow for the screens to sometimes overlap up to two storeys in height, on different levels and also between two separate units, creating the freedom to adjust sun light in a certain space. This presented some unique challenges during the production phase, like the potential of the screens to collide per se. This was cleverly resolved using complex and carefully considered louvre track technology coupled with concrete outline geometries.

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    Balcony view of adjustable bronzed-coloured louvres. Image: Tony Owen Partners

    The Castlereagh was completed in 2015 and prices varied from $560,000 for a studio to $1, 250,000 for a three bedroom apartment. 

    PRODUCTS

    LOUVRES
    JWI LOUVRES P/L

    LOUVRE WINGS
    Lowline

    GL AWNING GLASS
    Viridian New World Glass

    WALL CLADDING
    Symonite Australia

    ALUMINUM ANODIZED
    Universal Anodisers

    AUTOMATIC DOORS
    Auto Ingress Automatic Doors

    PRE-CAST ELEMENTS
    Hansen Pre Cast

    KITCHEN APPLIANCES
    Smeg Australia

    SINKS & TAPWARE
    Reece

    TOILETS
    Caroma

    Key Info

    Architect: Tony Owen Partners
    Developer: Lenland
    Structural Engineer: Waterman
    Engineer:  Cardno
    Landscape: Formed Gardens
    Heritage Impact Statement: NBRS+Partners
    Cost: $4,000sqm
    Words: McKenna Moroz

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