Foveaux Street

Project Status: Completed 2022
Location: 72-84 Foveaux Street, Surry Hills

72-84 Foveaux Street, Surry Hills is located on the northern side of the street with its principal façade facing south. It is approximately 400 metres east of Central Station and offers ample end of trip facilities that maximise on the active forms of transport and supports the site’s strong proximity to various public transport interchanges.

The site sits within the Little Riley Street Conservation area and is surrounded by a mix of commercial and residential land uses which include terrace housing and street-front retail. Careful consideration has been given to the existing nature of the streetscape and the surrounding buildings. The project successfully adds and integrates into the existing and developing creative cluster precinct within Surry Hills.

The architectural design has not changed the overall structure of the building and its adaptive reuse assists in providing a more sustainable outcome. The existing six-storey brick office and retail building has been modified into a refurbished eight storey commercial building, providing the headquarters for a singular tenant.

The building’s rooftop is activated by a garden and communal open space for this tenant to enjoy and comprises a variety of plants, raised planters and outdoor furniture. The terrace will provide occupants with a communal open space and a flexible area for work and relaxation.

The ground floor has been configured to deliver a new entry, meeting rooms, staff canteen and kitchen for preparation of communal dining. The dining space sits within a three storey glazed atrium which wraps around the irregular existing building form and creates an open west facing façade on Waterloo Street. Three sculptural lantern-like roof lights sit within the glass atrium roof.

The spatial experiences are enriched through the varied palette of materials incorporated throughout the project that animate the facade; white painted metal sunshades, roughly finished cement render, brass mesh screens, off-form concrete, clear glass blades, translucent marble panels, aluminium framed glazing, frameless glass windows and white painted louvres.

The southern façade is cloaked in white steel shelves and a wall of colourful glass. The artwork has been designed in collaboration with internationally renowned artist Janet Laurence, taking reference from the coloured glass sculptures of the Italian architect and designer Ettore Sottsass. It is an exciting, imaginative and integrated response offered back to the street. Its presence will ignite a reaction from the passers-by as the linear arrangement of the panels complement the striking shadows cast by the changing sun angles throughout the day. Overall, the work acts as a membrane for filtering and gathering natural light by softening its presence in the space.

Photography: Brett Boardman
Artwork: Janet Laurence