Green the new black as developer takes leafy east literally


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The Highgreen complex in Glen Iris takes being in Melbourne’s leafy east literally.

Growing demand from buyers has developers turning over a new leaf in apartment design.

While blocky facades and sharp corners have dominated the complexes heading to the city’s suburbs, a buyer-led push is driving more natural styles — and more greenery on buildings.

Marshall White Projects director Leonard Teplin said feedback lamenting the creation of “concrete jungles” had prompted Vantage Point Projects and Ascui & Co architects to take developing in the city’s leafy east literally with their Highgreen project.

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The 29-apartment complex at 1457 High St, Glen Iris has an H-shaped design with wavy architectural flourishes and extensive vertical and overhead greenery.

Lush garden spaces are a highlight to the lower level apartments.

“It’s a very soft, curved facade,” Mr Teplin said.

And it wasn’t just about aesthetics. It provided benefits to air quality, noise reduction and even energy efficiency for the development’s mix of two- and three-bedroom apartments, he said.

Blurring the lines between inside and out also provided a greater sense of space and natural light.

From the upper levels, treetop views provide an expansive green vista.

“The building has been designed so that from your apartment you look to a green environment, rather than hard surfaces,” Mr Teplin said.

The average apartment size is 110sq m and comes with a 30-40sq m outdoor space.

European oak floors and kitchens with marble benchtops and Gaggenau and Miele appliances are included.

The green backdrop is a factor for every room in each apartment.

Pale, large-format tiles feature in the bathrooms, while a study caters to those who bring work home.

Mr Teplin said while a tougher market had extended buyers’ timelines, projects that stood out from the crowd were still selling well.

Interiors designed with natural light and the natural world in mind have appealed to buyers.

And the softer, greener look at Highgreen was why more than 20 of its apartments were now sold.

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The remaining apartments are priced at $825,000 for a two-bedroom offering, and $1.245-$1.295 million for three-bedroom designs.

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