Architectural Team: John Button, Paul Cockburn, Robert Carroll, Steven Spizick, David Hefford, Khai Kulahan, Helen Daly and Ilya Brucksch-Domanski
Consultants: Aldanmark Pty Ltd, TBS Engineering Consultants Pty Ltd, Tasarc and Susan Small Landscape Architects.
Builder: Fairbrother Pty Ltd.
Total Site Area: 6715m2.
Client: Department of Health and Human Services (Tasmanian State Government)
Software: AutoCAD LT & SketchUp
Cost: $9,900,000.00 USD
Text description provided by the architects. The Trinity Hill Youth Accommodation and Training Facility has been developed by Housing Tasmania to provide safe and secure long term housing, on-site support, and training and education opportunities for youth who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, on low income, or living with a significant and permanent disability.
The project provides 46 independent 1 bedroom units including 8 suitable for young people living with a significant and permanent disability, a caretakers house, support staff offices, communal spaces, training rooms and kitchen.
The development centres around the heritage listed Trinity Hill State School (c1885) which has been re-purposed to create a community hub with recreational and training facilities. Limited but sensitive conservation works have been undertaken within the school building where the original main classroom configuration has been restored.
The project site fronts onto Elizabeth Street and rises over 10m through to Church Street. Strategically placed elevated walkway links provide universal access right through the site.
The old school building divides the site into two parts which differ in character and level of sensitivity. The Church Street side has a quieter, residential character. Elizabeth Street is harder edged, more dynamic and noisier with main street activity, commerce and traffic.
The design resolution concentrates all but 8 of the residential units to the Elizabeth Street side where a higher density can sit more comfortably. All units face north to maximise sun and outlook.
Consideration has been given to place and context. The new building envelopes are subservient to the old State School, enhancing its pre-eminence, and the Elizabeth Street frontage has, in homage to the heritage townhouse adjacent, been articulated to reference its form and scale.
Precast concrete has been used extensively, for both economy and robustness. However, other elements such as coloured sun shades and wall tiles, angled wall planes and timber screening have been introduced to enliven the building and counter any ‘institutional’ feel by engendering a quirky sense of play and fun. This extends to the unit interiors where use of colour and shelving crates help create a less formal environment attuned to the younger occupants.