The Nicholson is a housing project in Melbourne, Australia that was one of the first to integrate privately owned residences with social housing units. Comprised of 198 modular units, the building is situated on a disused tram depot. Completed in 2011, the project was designed by DesignInc Melbourne and integrates sustainable design practices.
The project uses prefabricated, modular units constructed with Unitised Building’s UB System. Each modular apartment was manufactured offsite along with the interior fit out. Once delivered onsite each module was craned into place, stacked and bolted together. This process was estimated to speed up the construction time by 50%, while simultaneously reducing the carbon footprint, local disruption and overall waste.
The prefabrication was incorporated with other sustainable practices such as passive design elements, cross ventilation, grey water reuse and solar energy.
Guiding Housing Principles
With the project's client being VicUrban, the guiding principle was to demonstrate that better quality affordable housing can be developed in parallel with better neighbourhood amenities in a mixed use development.
A number of the apartments will be funded by the Federal Government’s Nation Building initiative and subsidised under the National Rental Affordable Housing Scheme.