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Monash Art Design & Architecture

DAMIAN MADIGAN

Damian Madigan
The Block As Apartment
2014

Reconsidering the villa as a series of rooms with varying porosity and rethinking the established territorial pattern of a single site enables new density patterns to be explored across a neighbourhood block. International urban housing and landscape typologies are dissected, reconfigured and grafted onto an Adelaide block to test the extent and quality of spaces that can be achieved whilst simultaneously achieving density targets. Using recognised pieces of urban infrastructure in an unintended way and in an alien context suggests that rather than compromising on existing amenity in order to achieve higher densities, a new suburban amenity might be achievable.

Social armatures: experiments in the adaptability of the Adelaide villa and alternative infill in established suburbs

By 2036, Adelaide’s population will grow to a modest 1.85m but this 54% growth rate will see enormous social and housing pressures. Put simply, Adelaide needs more houses but of a far greater variety, interconnected in a socially sustainable manner. The city’s policy strategy, The 30-Year Plan for Greater Adelaide, reflects similar thinking across Australia: infill will be favoured over fringe development, with density increases occurring in new transit-oriented zones without negatively impacting adjacent suburbs.

This creates tensions between the established and new settlement patterns. Furthermore, applying universal principles of transit-oriented urban housing in cities with little tradition of it (such as Adelaide) can result in a slow uptake of the new models, coupled with a fear of established suburbs losing their character and qualities.

This work argues that precincts traditionally deemed inappropriate for adaptation should be considered alongside all others as crucial components of a remodelled city. Rather than assuming that established residential areas cannot or should not contribute to meeting the density needs of a changing demographic, design approaches that engage with the flexibility and adaptability of existing housing stock whilst working within the existing neighbourhood pattern, can provide a contribution to the debate that is currently absent.

Damian Madigan
Alternative Infill Opportunities
2014

Like the policies of other Australian cities, The 30-Year Plan for Greater Adelaide proposes that medium-density medium-rise infill zones in transit corridors (left) can achieve the density targets of the city without adversely affecting surrounding residential areas (right), including those with heritage and character overlays (centre). Given the fact that Adelaide’s inner metro growth areas are within 5km of the city centre, there is an argument to be made that engaging with infill in Adelaide necessarily means engaging with the city’s old established suburbs.

Damian Madigan
Adelaide’s Suburban Morphology
2014

Adelaide’s inner suburbs are predominated by the Adelaide villa, a variation of the English cottage. Traditionally four roomed masonry houses with central corridors and rear lean-tos, their siting is generally consistent within and across suburbs. Side setback variations occur between villas depending on whether the original owners bought properties wide enough for a horse and carriage lane. Night cart lanes of approximately 6m widths occupy the rear of properties established prior to 1910. Knowing and describing the morphology of Adelaide’s villas and the suburbs they form enables precincts to be analysed and reconfigured as an understandable urban system.

Damian Madigan
The Malleable Adelaide Villa
2014

Household structures change over time: how does one design a more robust residential adaptation that anticipates future change? A 2013 Adelaide villa renovation is described via the spatial and physical tactics required to meet the owners’ requests to age in place in a reconfigured self-contained ground floor zone.
Speculative scenarios are then mapped onto this in order to test how much intervention is required to alter the newly reconfigured use to other things such as running a business from home or downsizing to a smaller apartment in order to subdivide (pictured). An understanding of site morphologies affords responsive landscape spaces.

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