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Construction group Grocon has unveiled the design for its latest project for Melbourne: a 32-storey residential tower designed by local architects Ashton Raggatt McDougall, which will be built on the site of the former Carlton & United Brewery. The façade of the tower will feature a portrait of indigenous leader, William Barak.
The image of Barak will be created using a striated balcony design, with undulations in the shape of the balconies outlining the features of the portrait so that, from a distance, the full portrait becomes visible.
Unveiling the design, Grocon CEO Daniel Grollo described the concept as world leading, adding: We hope the people of Melbourne will embrace what it celebrates as part of our culture, in the same way that we embrace the Shrine of Remembrance at the other end of the Swanston Street axis.
Barak, an elder of the Wurundjeri tribe, is believed to have been present at the signing of an 1835 treaty with Melbournes founder, John Batman, and played an important role in bridging the divide between black and white Australia.
Grollo said it was appropriate that Baraks life would be celebrated in the buildings design, adding that the design had been welcomed by the Wurundjeri tribe. I believe they see Portrait as a fitting gesture to commemorate a great leader in their community, he said.
The design feature of the striated balcony has been explored by ARM previously, in their concept design for the Dupain Building in Sydneys Darling Harbour. The firms proposal for the harbourside commercial development featured a similar sequence of white balconies, cut away to reveal the image of Max Dupains photograph, Bondi. The building was designed and documented in 2005, but construction did not proceed.
Portrait is the latest design to be revealed as part of Grocons large-scale redevelopment of the Carlton & United Brewery site in Melbournes CBD. The vacant site is set to be transformed into a mixed-use development, with buildings designed by firms including ARM, Denton Corker Marshall, Minifie Nixon, Sean Godsell, McBride Charles Ryan and NH Architecture. [“Studio505s Pixel Building”:https://www.australiandesignreview.com/news/17810-Pixel-Building-named-Australia-s-greenest-building] has recently been completed on the site.