183 A’Beckett Street
183-189 A’Beckett Street
Developer – Wee Hur Capital
Architect – Hayball
Structural Engineer – Webber design
Project Management – PDS Group
Builder – Crema Constructions
We’re sharing an insider’s glimpse into the process of developing 183 A’Beckett Street. The cheers, and the challenges. It’s what we didn’t include in the pitch; but will always be proud of.
Setting the Scene
183 A’Beckett Street is situated in Melbourne’s North-Central city area, beside Flagstaff Gardens and the iconic Queen Victoria Market. With easy access to The University of Melbourne, RMIT University, Victoria University and Australian Catholic University, it is a natural choice for student housing, offering the very best in amenities and locale for its inhabitants to settle into student life.
A noteworthy ‘full circle’ moment is the history of the location. 183 A’Beckett Street was the former home of Keables “The Original Nut & Bolt Specialist”, a company who has been providing materials to the Crema family and the construction industry for 70 years!
Taking the end-user into full consideration, the brief at hand was to develop a residential complex that offers a vibrant, welcoming, and inclusive accommodation experience for a large student cohort. Addressing the needs and aspirations of a melting pot of international and Australian students alike, the inspiration was a balance between form and function; to create a space that facilitates relaxation, study, and bonding with friends, all within a 48-storey building.
With an opportunity to create standout amenity and lifestyle offerings, enhancing what ‘communal space’ could mean to inhabitants, we set out to foster shared experiences, inclusivity and connectedness.
The built form references the Modern style factory below and the 1930’s electrotype printing technologies offered not only on this site in the past, but was common sight in this part of the CBD.
Our team were especially chuffed with how the façade turned out (literally): it features an insitu patterned offset core. For the construction enthusiasts wondering, the jumpform shutters were inset with HDPE patterned panels which were applied with a light-coloured mineral stain. This gives the texture of an external cladding, without the time and cost of applying another layer to the façade.
183 A’Beckett Street was a COVID-times construction. We took each curveball as it came and found ways to work with it.
For this project, we offset the challenge of a reduction of staff on site (operating at 25% capacity) by running the structure, façade, and placement of bathroom pods solely. This strategic shift allowed our critical path to power along on a 3 – 4 day cycle. Once back at full capacity, the fit-out trades had a clear run to catch up.
We adapted. We stayed agile. We remained positive. That’s worthy of a big cheers!
183 A’Beckett Street is a testament to building with practicality, purpose, and a solid (contingency) plan. We successfully delivered 888 rooms over 48 storeys in the span of 23 months. Beyond 888 beautiful rooms, the building itself is packed with perks – from the usual suspects like a gym, BBQ pits, study areas, outdoor terrace, and communal kitchen. But that’s not all. These lucky students also have access to more memorable features, like a private cinema, sky lounge, games pit, yoga studio, music room and café. The state-of-the-art architecturally designed building and its interiors have become buzzing basecamp to a vibrant community of students who now call Melbourne home.