First look: Sekisui House lodge plans for next stage of The Orchards, Norwest masterplan

It's the fourth stage in the 8.1 hectare, $1 billion masterplan, which when complete will have 1,300 apartments
Render of the proposed residences in the group's Stage Four release. Credit: Crone Architects
Alison Warters June 9, 20220 min read

Sekisui House has lodged plans for the latest stage of their masterplanned community in Norwest, The Orchards.

It's the fourth stage in the 8.1 hectare, $1 billion masterplan, which when complete will have 1,300 apartments. There are set to be five stages.

There will be three towers in the fourth stage, each designed by Crone Architects. They'll have 583 apartments and townhouses, a mix of one, two, three and four-bedroom dwellings.

Designed by Crone Architects, three residential buildings are planned, each comprising a taller tower form and lower podium form. The buildings will also have a community wellness centre which fronts the adjacent Linear Park.

“The collection of buildings on the site are articulated as three distinct forms with further differentiation of each into a tall and podium component," Crone noted in their design statement.

"These three elements inform the marketing staging of the development, with construction intending all be completed within a year of each other providing one community,” said Crone in their application design statement.

Render of the proposed apartments and townhouses for Stage Four of The Orchards. Credit: Crone Architects

The Orchards masterplan was established around an original orchard grove with abundant natural open space and a residual Cumberland Plains landscape.

Connection to nature, community and recognition of the original landscape reside within the re-imagined masterplan for Stage Four.

A wide range of residential amenity will also be included in the latest stage, complimenting and adding to the already existing amenity within The Orchards. The community centre, which can be subdivided into multiple rooms or reserved as a single space, is accompanied by a courtyard, as well as a swimming pool, spa and gym.

There will also be a central courtyard, dubbed ‘The Greens’, a terraced grass platform, and 'The Garden’, with barbecue facilities and private niches within landscape.

The courtyard is the focus of the project allowing for shared amenity and community building. The masterplan built form surrounds the expansive space, with residences overlooking the courtyard and the adjacent, naturally landscaped, Linear Parkland, Lucinda Avenue and the Spurway Drive.

Continuing the nature landscape of Linear Park into the courtyard and with planting integrated at lower levels across the buildings, the three-dimensional integration of landscape and building connects residents to nature.

“As a contributor to sustainable environments the proposal provides significant amenity and communal facilities to advance and facilitate a sustainable community of diverse family types, age groups and cultures,” Crone added.

“Communal facilities shared by all residents of the Sekisui ‘The Orchards’ development enables a strong and healthy community to prosper."

Render of the proposed apartments for Stage Four of The Orchards. Credit: Crone Architects

The site, prior to development consisted of a landscape part residual Cumberland Plains and part commercial orchard, within the trees on the surrounding hills and valleys.

Parts of the green oasis still remains and is being reinvigorated along with Linear Park and the adjacent golf course greens and trees.

“This inspiration of an organic architecture which merges with landscape is a consistent design element of prior stages either within the façade or at rooftop level.”

The merging of architecture and planting is articulated as a green spine woven into the tower facades, and as edge planting to podium buildings, softening the distinction of buildings and landscape.

The two nineteen storey towers fronting Spurway Drive at its intersecting north and south ends have similar façade designs and integration of planting while the third, twelve storey tower with a setback part roof level penthouse, has a distinct façade responding to its prime location at the northern corner of Linear Park, surrounded by retained mature trees and landscape.

Located within walking distance of the Norwest retail precinct and Metro Station, The Orchards also sits immediately adjacent to the Castle Hill Country Club, providing the community with a sweeping range of local amenity.

Alison Warters

Alison Warters is a property journalist for Urban, based in Sydney. Alison is especially interested in the evolution of the New Build/Development space, when it comes to design innovation and sustainability.
Sydney Apartments
Masterplanned Communities
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