Common Ground Dickson | Collins Pennington Architects

Common Ground Dickson | Collins Pennington Architects | Photographer: Kiernan May

2023 National Architecture Awards Program

Common Ground Dickson | Collins Pennington Architects

Traditional Land Owners
Ngunnawal people of the Ngunnawal Nation

Australian Capital Territory

Residential Architecture – Multiple Housing
Sustainable Architecture
Richard Crookes Constructions
Kiernan May
Project summary

Common Ground Dickson is a unique housing initiative aimed at addressing homelessness in the ACT by providing permanent housing and support services to individuals and families experiencing chronic homelessness.

The model is based on Housing First principles combined with wraparound support services to create a “common ground” where residents can thrive.

The building is designed with a strong environmental focus including an extensive solar array, storm water harvesting, and energy-efficient units. The site is located in a convenient and accessible area, with managed public spaces, including a large multipurpose social space, art studio, and social enterprise café, providing opportunities for social interaction and support.

ACT Architecture Awards Accolades
Commendation for Residential Architecture – Multiple Housing
ACT Jury Citation

Common Ground Dickson demonstrates a highly commendable response to Multiple Housing. It provides a range of dwelling typologies among highly functional community facilities. Robust and natural materials offer a sense of warmth and durability appropriate to the development.

The use of a higher built form to create larger and more open external spaces is highly successful in creating a range of zones for productivity, activity and soft landscaping. Generous circulation and extensive access to natural light and views creates places for incidental interaction or quiet contemplation.

The design is unique in purpose and allows both residents and staff the opportunity to utilise the space in a meaningful, practical way.

The light enriched common areas are welcoming, free flowing, yet provide segregation to enable activities to be conducted with sensitivities of the vulnerable cohort accommodated.

The units themselves have been thoughtfully designed and fit-out to allow tenants to age in place, and adapt to any evolving accessibility requirements. More importantly, the units present themselves in a very tasteful manner (not institutional) that allow the tenants to create a warm environment and a true feeling of home.

Project Practice Team

David Pennington, Design Architect
Shaun Bray, Senior Drafts Person

Project Consultant and Construction Team

Jeremy Barker, Project Manager

Connect with Collins Pennington Architects
Common Ground Dickson | Collins Pennington Architects | Photographer: Kiernan May

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