A double design delight for Docklands

Docklands may well stand to gain its most daring residential and commercial developments near simultaneously, as separate developers press ahead with their respective projects.

At NewQuay, MAB Corporation has officially ramped up the profile of its latest tower to grace the precinct. In conjunction with Six Degree Architects, the duo are launching Escala which will feature a number of unique design aspects.

The $130 million development consists of retail, hospitality, commercial and residential uses, with a nod toward Melbourne’s laneway and design culture apparent.

Hero perspective of Escala. Image: Six Degrees Architects

The 20-level T-shaped building is split between a distinctive podium and tower elements. The liberal use of brick to the northern podium contradicts with Escala's other more contemporary podium aspects, whilst the tower is a mixture of gold facade, protruding balconies and stained glass equivalent facade treatment that frames the tower's common areas.

Above a new piazza, Escala will include various format apartments, lofts and three-level home-offices.

On the apartment options, MAB Corporation's General Manager of Residential David Allt-Graham stated the following on the array of living choices within Escala:

We expect the variety of apartment sizes and shapes, not to mention the inherent flexibility of the loft and SoHo offerings, to appeal to young Gen Y’s and millennials that often work from home. 

Thanks largely to digital transformation and tech-savvy millennials, flexible working arrangements are becoming the norm for most Australian businesses, and we were keen to offer a practical and inspiring place for people to live and work.

However, we also feel the scale of the loft offering will attract young families seeking spacious inner city living. The mezzanine can be an elevated children’s play area and the living spaces are generous for hosting friends and extended family.

As our 13th boutique apartment complex in NewQuay, we’ve learnt a great deal about apartment living.  Undoubtedly, Escala is our most diverse and sophisticated project to date.

Stay tuned for Urban Melbourne's chat with Mark Healy from Six Degrees Architects on the design merits of Escala.

Escala's entrance lobby. Image: Six Degrees Architects

A short distance away Docklands' second highly impressive design is set to become reality.

Poly Australia has indicated that they intend to press on with facilitating construction of 1000 La Trobe street regardless of whether or not the commercial tower has an anchor tenant in place. Initially slated to start construction toward the end of 2018, Poly Australia will move ahead with delivering the project.

During December the developer was successful in gaining a two-year permit extension to develop a 24-storey A-Grade office tower containing 31,500 square metres of floor space.

1000 La Trobe Street's angular expression. Image: Woods Bagot

1000 La Trobe Street was designed by Woods Bagot a number of years ago and is defined by its angular, articulated facade which is a far departure from the squat, squared and simple designs that are indicative of the vast majority of commercial docklands buildings.

The tower spans a 5,135sqm site and has an 85 metre frontage to La Trobe Street.

On the design Poly Victoria Executive Director Steve Wang said:

1000 La Trobe Street will be Poly Australia’s first commercial building in Victoria, and as such we intend to ensure that it will become one of Docklands’ most impressive buildings, both visually and environmentally.

Overlooking the Yarra River and the city skyline, we look forward to developing a world-class building that everyone within the Melbourne business district can be proud of.

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