Clay bricks from two contemporary ranges by Austral Bricks were used in the construction of the Wakerley Residence, which has now been announced a winner of the prestigious Robin Dods award for Residential Architecture - Houses.

James Russell Architect won the award for the Wakerley Residence at the Australian Institute of Architects 2013 QLD Architecture Awards held at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre in June.

The house was recognised as a home that celebrates place, environment and community, while representing a new style of living that allows the home to be opened up to the street front encouraging engagement between inhabitants and their neighbours beyond.

Austral Bricks worked with James Russell Architect on the exterior of the building, incorporating its contemporary Burlesque and Metallix clay brick ranges.

Aligned with the design style of established houses in Brisbane’s inner suburbs, which are compact, with small setbacks and open verandas that encourage engagement with the street, the award-winning house was designed with outdoor circulation through a site, and along boundaries to allow for enjoyment of south-east Queensland’s benign climate.

The house has an envelope of face brickwork and concrete, both self-finished and able to cope with extreme weather. The combination of adaptable glazing, walls and landscape, allows the spaces to readily alternate between internal or external use.

The Metallix brick range from Austral Bricks provides a sharp, new look for the home, with the premium metallic finish of the clay bricks adding a subtle sheen. The brick is ideal when used in large expanses of brickwork, or for a fantastic contrast when used as a feature material.

The balance is constructed in Metallix Emery, a dark brick with a metallic finish, which imparts a subtle, silky sheen that creates a sharp, new look. This distinctive finish adds polish to any building project, while still retaining the durability and technical excellence inherent in clay bricks.

Austral’s Burlesque bricks in Chilling Black also feature in the building, delivering a highly glazed, versatile and contemporary aesthetic.

The ground level brickwork in Wakerley Residence is laid in a decorative Flemish bond. The combination of Burlesque fully-glazed bricks and a waterproof mortar ensures the walls will remain watertight.

Delivering several advantages in any project, clay bricks have long been known for their ability to withstand the harsh Australian sun, icy winters and monsoonal downpours, with little ongoing maintenance unlike other building materials.

Clay bricks also offer excellent comfort inside the home including less noise, more protection and up to 25% reduction in cooling and heating bills. It has been proven that the face brick’s thermal mass combined with climate sensitive design can lower carbon emissions through a reduction in space heating and cooling.

Austral Bricks is part of the Brickworks Building Products Group, one of Australia’s largest manufacturers of bricks, pavers, masonry blocks, retaining wall systems, roof tiles, precast concrete panels, façade systems and landscaping products.