Chickens on the roof! Mollison Land's Abbotsford mixed-use marvel

Chickens on the roof! Mollison Land's Abbotsford mixed-use marvel
Chickens on the roof! Mollison Land's Abbotsford mixed-use marvel

Is there any building quite like this in Melbourne? Not when there's a chicken coop on the rooftop.

Mollison Land Pty Ltd has taken to planning a unique proposal for an Abbotsford development site that could yield what is likely to be Melbourne's truest mixed-use building. Across 20-30 Mollison Street, the 12 level community-based proposal by CHT Architects is underpinned by the principles of cross-pollination and collaboration.

Translated that means the building is designed to encompass both private enterprise and the surrounding community to a degree not previously seen in Melbourne for a building of this size.

From dedicated office space to a rooftop farm, dog care facility and childcare centre, 20-30 Mollison Street seeks to make "substantial contributions towards meeting Council's environmental, social and economic objectives for development within the municipality."

20-30 Mollison Street application summary

Chickens on the roof! Mollison Land's Abbotsford mixed-use marvel
Street level perspective. Planning image: CHT Architects
  • Proposed: 12-storey building at 47m to roof line
  • Dedicated office space: 9448sqm
  • Business incubator: 2210sqm
  • Cafe: 151sqm
  • Childcare centre: 1328sqm
  • End of trip facilities: 223sqm
  • Dog care facility: 150sqm
  • Breakout spaces: 1056sqm
  • Roof top farm: 231sqm
  • Theatre: 133sqm
  • Wellness centre: 271sqm
  • 3 level basement: 148 vehicles & 122 bicycles
  • Estimated cost of development: $18m

In the spirit of Bauhaus

CHT Architects have referenced Walter Gropius as a basis for the design, evoking the following principles:

The ultimate aim of all creative activity is a building! The decoration of buildings was once the noblest function of fine arts, and fine arts were indispensable to great architecture. Today they exist in complacent isolation, and can only be rescued by the conscious co-operation and collaboration of all craftsmen.

Let us desire, conceive, and create the new building of the future together. It will combine architecture, sculpture, and painting in a single form, and will one day rise towards the heavens from the hands of a million workers as the crystalline symbol of a new and coming faith.

“Bauhaus Manifesto”, 1919 by Walter Gropius

An Abbotsford focal point

Chickens on the roof! Mollison Land's Abbotsford mixed-use marvel
20-30 Mollison Street varied uses. Planning image: CHT Architects

The low-rise site encompasses 1,844sqm and is a stark step away from the generally low-rise nature of the immediate area.

In addition to the wellness centre and dog care facility, the balance of 20-30 Mollison Street's ground floor will be dedicated to five artist studios and an expansive gallery space with an atrium void above that terminates at level four. Levels one and two are monopolised by business incubator spaces, save for a theatre and breakout space on level one.

Level three's sole purpose is that of a childcare centre, with both indoor and covered outdoor areas included.

Commercial offices take precedence above, with further green breakout spaces, a triple height void and a full height atrium punctuating the office floors. A water plant, chicken run, vegetable plots, presentation suite and agricultural area cap off the atypical project.

The application has gone through Council preliminary assessment process and is now at advertising.

20-30 Mollison Street development team

  • Developer: Mollison Land Pty Ltd
  • Architecture & Urban Context Report: CHT Architects
  • Planning: SJB Planning
  • Traffic Impact Assessment: Traffix Group
  • Waste Management Plan: Leigh Design
  • Economic Assessment Report: Charter Keck Cramer
  • Sustainability Management Plan & WSUD: Intrax Consulting Engineer
  • Site history: Alliance EPM
  • Noise Assessment: Marshall Day Acoustics
  • Wind Impact Assessment: Vipac 
CHT Architects City of Yarra


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