Giving a piece of Newcastle’s coastline a new lease on life, SJB’s LUME, a mixed-use building located along the steel city’s Honeysuckle foreshore does away with the industrial stylings of the area with nuances of colour, texture and a sense of place.
Comprising 138 bespoke waterfront apartments over seven storeys, 10 terraces and three commercial/retail offerings on the ground floor, the building expands Newcastle’s already increasing skyline to combat its growing population. Catering for the needs of downsizing families and those in the city looking to move to an apartment lifestyle, each dwelling is considered as an individual home with flexible floor plans.
Stretched along the foreshore with views to the north across the Hunter river, and the urban fabric of Newcastle to the south, the site boasts a unique urban condition where the city meets the water. The building’s form channels the coastline curves and the city’s classic architectural time period, with the masonry of the old-town city centre clearly acknowledged.
A material palette of robust qualities were selected due to their longevity, minimal maintenance and integral finish. The brickwork references the land, water and sky. Terracotta is a clear acknowledgement of the earth, and glazed turquoise brick wraps the podium up towards white bagged brick. The façade undulates across the three buildings with a playfulness in both detail and silhouette, further enhanced with the integration of gardens at the public edges.
The site’s envelope and zoning regulations projected a large, elongated mass which left little room for connectivity to the foreshore. SJB were able to counter this through breaking down the mass and allowing for pedestrian corridors through the site. The urban design strategy provided a robust proposal to allow the design to connect Honeysuckle Drive to the Hunter River.
SJB in their work have been able to devise a building that capitalises on it’s unique standpoint in Newcastle, and were rightfully awarded for their work, taking out the Multi Housing category at the AIA Awards for the Newcastle region. A unique sculptural object that orientates views and references its context, the building’s colour and form ensure it is a building that pulls attention away from the mining paraphernalia seen across the city, and towards the building and surrounding body of water.