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Pace of Collingwood’s brick inlay façade creates a bold and distinctive streetscape

Brick Inlay facade, Pace of Collingwood

They’re new apartments with an old soul, inspired by this historic suburb’s industrial grain. Anchored on the corner of Wellington, Cambridge and Langridge streets, the brick ends that hold Pace of Collingwood together project a robust and bold brick inlay façade that’s made a distinctive mark on the streetscape, while talking comfortably to the history of the site.

Offering a diversity of living opportunities – including 70 one, two and three bedroom apartments - and eastern views from the city skyline to the Dandenong ranges, Pace of Collingwood fits seamlessly into the vibrant Collingwood context, appealing to a mixed demographic. Ground floor retail spaces, a rooftop ‘pocket park’ and landscaped areas increase the building’s amenity and add valuable green spaces in a city setting.

From the outset, the design of these apartments had to be different. At nine storeys tall, the building has a dominant street edge, spanning across the entire block. So it was critical that it didn’t feel overwhelming at the street level or shadow the opposite footpath.

Brick Inlay Facade System, featuring a custom stone brick tile blend
Image: Michael Gazolla

The SJB creative response to this challenge does quite the contrary. The material choice complements the Collingwood context, bringing their vision for Pace of Collingwood to life.

While a strong brick podium grounds the building at street level, a recessive mansard-style roofline, clad in bronze metal, tapers the building at the top, capping its height, and allowing natural light and aspect into each apartment.

Beaudene Fulwood, associate at SJB explains, “We were trying to break down the building form so that it didn’t feel too overwhelming. That’s why we explored different materials - different coloured bricks, concrete and metalwork – finding ways to create almost three separate buildings on the one site”.

In a suburb that’s renowned for its beautiful and predominantly red brick textures – across civic buildings, warehouses and industrial sites – it was easy to consider what the signature facade material would be.

Brick Inlay facade with a custom rustic brick tile blend

From the beginning, SJB had a clear idea that brick would be predominant, and also a clear idea of the colours used. Using brick tiles from the Robertson’s Building Products range, which included the Rustic Red brick tiles and a custom stone tile blend, gave the ability to mix it up and use a few different tones adding a layer of texture.

Pace of Collingwood has two predominant brick podiums – one at either end of the building. “For this particular project, brick inlay was a high quality and effective way of realising brickwork and given the projects multi-residential nature,” says Beaudene.

Brick is then the counterpoint to the two remaining facade materials: metal and concrete. The three work majestically together, breaking down the building into smaller components. The honed precast concrete panels provide a beautifully smooth surface to break up the building between the two brick halves, each vertical break along Langridge Street creating moments to transition between brick and concrete. And the bronze metalwork, with its shiny, smooth reflective surface and fine grain, provides another counterpoint to the rustic roughness and solidity of the brick tiles.

Needless to say, Pace is ecstatic with the outcome, securing a 100% apartment sell rate on completion and attracting queues of hopeful renters who lined the streets to inspect them.

Pace of Collingwood is a striking apartment building with a strong street presence. SJB is to be congratulated for creating such a bold and distinctive facade that provides a sense of timelessness and longevity, speaks beautifully to Collingwood’s historic fabric and perfectly reflects the character of this colourful neighbourhood.

Architects: SJB

Developer and Builder: Pace Development Group

Precaster: NU-Con

and custom stone brick tiles ( Brushed Grey, Flamed Grey, Soft Grey)

Photography: Aaron Puls (and Michael Gazolla, where indicated)



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