NH Architecture has designed the retail podium and public realm areas of the Corner Bourke and William (CBW) precinct in Melbourne. This mixed-use development is located on the northwest corner of Bourke and William Streets, with Ramsey Lane to the west and Goldsbrough Lane extending through the centre of the site.
The design addresses circulation through the site, its connection with the surrounding CBD and the development of a strong public realm through the revival of Goldsbrough Lane. Encompassing and resolving the interface between retail zones, pedestrian walkways and bridges and the sheltering of the public space were the primary intentions of the project.
This development was the first non-government building in Victoria to achieve a five star ESD rating, through its use of materials and solar modelling.
The project stands as a precedent for the infill and densification of CBD blocks, using lower level architectural opportunities to activate a “parallel streetscape”. Retail activation and public circulation can then occur at multiple levels. The urban culture of Melbourne’s nineteenth-century laneways, which cut major city blocks into a multitude of pedestrian shortcuts and spaces to enjoy, has come to represent the embodiment of Melbourne’s international identity.