Scape Apartments

There’s an old bank building on the corner of Elizabeth and Pelham Streets, just north of Melbourne’s CBD. It’s in a prominent position, and our 15-level apartment tower hovers above it.

The 1880s classically inspired building is no longer a bank—these days it’s the office of an NGO. It’s across the road from the old Haymarket site and the enormous roundabout where Elizabeth Street, Royal Parade and Flemington Road intersect.

The old bank has a two-storey splayed corner with wonderfully decorative arches. The site is wedge shaped and the building was historically a historic city landmark, now swamped by newer, less-elegant structures.

Our tower, for client Scape, hovers above. It reinstates the old bank’s prominence and restores the status of its site as a gateway to the CBD.

The glazing is netted with diagonal criss-crossing. The wedge-shaped building has a rounded front edge that swells above the bank, reflecting its form with one large vertical curve. It’s both a landmark column and a dynamic-looking form that echoes the circular traffic paths outside.

Scape leases and manages apartments exclusively for students in locations around Australia.

Our Scape tower has just five apartments per floor above a small footprint, and all have long views along the three boulevards and to the University of Melbourne, Royal Park, Princes Park and to the Macedon Ranges beyond.

The façade is fully glazed so all apartments have natural light, none of it borrowed.

We’ve worked with heritage consultants to ensure the bank’s heritage façade will be restored and rejuvenated. The tower is set back as far as possible to allow the bank some visual breathing room.

As the northern edges of the CBD are developed in the coming years, the urban form of the precinct will grow. This building revives its prominent site and will, we hope, catalyse a rejuvenation of the Haymarket site into one of Melbourne’s significant urban spaces.