Nightingale Bowden | Breathe

Nightingale Bowden | Breathe | Photographer: Anthony Basheer

2023 National Architecture Awards Program

Nightingale Bowden | Breathe

Traditional Land Owners
Kaurna people of the Adelaide Plains

South Australia

EmAGN Project Award
Residential Architecture – Multiple Housing
Hindmarsh Construction Australia Pty Ltd
Anthony Basheer
Project summary

Nightingale Bowden is about a paradigm shift. It’s about urban renewal, housing equity and sustainable communities. Breathe worked closely with Housing Choices Australia, the South Australian Housing Authority, Renewal SA and Nightingale Housing to make the impossible possible, a true mixed tenure Housing Model (50% social and affordable and 50% first home buyer).

The design approach is one of reductionism to create an honest building with design elements that pay homage to Bowden’s industrial past. The communal rooftop and circulation spaces are designed to encourage organic interactions to strengthen the community.

The ground floor is activated by a series of recycled brick micro townhouses. Their front gardens and verandas enable engagement with Second Street at a domestic scale.

Nightingale Bowden is designed to achieve housing affordability, world leading sustainability and to foster a strong sense of community.

South Australia Architecture Awards Accolades
Award for Residential Architecture – Multiple Housing
South Australia Jury Citation

The way that Nightingale conceptualises living is not for everyone, but then it is not intended to be.

As a flag bearer for early adopters and innovative thinking, Nightingale Bowden is a no-frills expression of exceptional sustainable outcomes and affordable living that wears its intentions and credentials on its sleeve.

Exposed services and materiality are deftly handled, and small spaces are carefully planned and successfully laid out for maximum effect and useability. The form and practicality of the overall design results in light-filled aspirational living spaces, and the roof terrace provides an industrially detailed bonus to the generous private balconies.

The detail of the external street scale retains a sense of humanity through the micro townhouses on the ground floor, which ensure engagement with the street via front gardens and verandas. The shared guest house offering facilitates internal-community building. Opportunities for greening have been carefully knitted into the various facades and will only enhance the building moving forward.

As adjacent sites are developed at similar scales, the success of this street level interface will mature, and the more challenging high-level external form will become more settled in context – at which point the jury feels that the robust detailing and simplicity of form can be fully appreciated.

South Australia Jury Presentation

Housing Choices Australia is proud to have worked with Breathe on Adelaide’s first fully sustainable, affordable apartment building, which is home to our residents on low incomes or living with disability. The 36-apartment building supports affordable living through a fossil fuel-free property, lowering energy costs for residents and reducing impact on the environment. Its siting near public transport and provision of plentiful bike parking avoids the need and cost for private car ownership. The communal rooftop garden creates opportunities for social connection and access to great views. Private balconies in each of the apartments provide valuable personal outdoor space.

Project Practice Team

Amy Smith, Graduate of Architecture
Bettina Robinson, Director of Interiors
Fairley Batch, Design Architect and Director of Architecture
Jeremy Mcleod, Design Director
Renee Agudelo, Graduate of Architecture
Stephen Lightbody, Project Lead
Ali Galbraith – Design Lead
Navid Varzaghani – Architect

Project Consultant and Construction Team

AECOM, Environmental
Cirqua, Trafic & Waste Management
FMG Engineering, Structural & Civil Engineering
Future Urban, Planning
Katnich Dodd, Builder Certifier
Landskāp, Urban design and landscaping
Lucid Consulting Australia, Fire Engineering, Services Engineering, ESD & Sustainability
Openwork, Landscaping
Sonus, Acoustics
Trento Fuller Building Certifiers & Consultants, Access
WT Partnership, Quantity Surveyor

Connect with Breathe
Nightingale Bowden | Breathe | Photographer: Anthony Basheer

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