A proposed project in Carrum Downs is an ideal example of Genton’s approach to master-planning – something Marc Debney says is taken very seriously. By first looking at the streets surrounding a proposed residential development, Marc says that pedestrian and traffic movements are carefully analysed to help guide decision-making. Rather than create an isolated community that sits within an existing suburb, the Genton ethos is to ensure a holistic integration of old with new, in a way that is authentic, meaningful and practical.
‘We want this development to feel like a true continuation of the surrounding context – and it’s something we have already done quite successfully in other areas,’ says Marc. In the case of the vision for the Carrum Downs development, Marc explains that fully-attached terrace houses will enjoy a shared street-facing view on one side, while, at the rear, design is driven by a desire to connect community in a way that is safe and fun, with private back gardens opening onto a shared common outdoor space that is visible from the rear windows of each terrace. ‘People don’t live in the development can walk through that public area as well and, for the residents, it is an extension of their outdoor space that enhances the feeling of being part of a broader community,’ he says.
With the pressure for denser types of living, even in outer-suburban areas, Genton Principal Steven Toia says there is a real need for open space that is safe and secure. By designing a development project that encourages residents and visitors in the community to mingle and connect, the experience of everyone in the area is enriched – something that master-planning is all about.
If the plans get approved, Steve says he looks forward to adding this development to the Carrum Downs landscape and the Genton team are also excited about a redevelopment of the old CSIRO site in Geelong that will be transformed into a residential community of roughly 230 dwellings.
With a recent Genton project – the VERSE townhouse project in Dandenong that was built in collaboration with Burbank Urban – currently short-listed for a prestigious local design award, Steven says Genton’s commitment to master-planning is the foundation of every design they create and, with the potential to turn urban projects into healthy, happy, greenspaces that enhance both communities as a whole and the individuals who live and work in and around them, master-planning is something that needs to have even more focus in intelligent Architecture of the future.