205 Gipps Street is an innovative housing project setting a new benchmark in the delivery of affordable housing.
The development provides 59 units; 25 of which have been retained by CEHL for co-operative housing and 34 purchased by private buyers. The development retains the heritage facade of the building which is indicative of its previous factory/warehouse use. New building elements are tiered back from the facade as building heights increase. Open space is achieved via balconies and a shared internal courtyard.
The social/private composition of the development has encouraged community integration and enabled CEHL to deliver the affordable housing units on a cash neutral basis (i.e net profits from the sale of the private units have been channelled into CEHL's capital exposure on the project). Community integration has been further bolstered through the purchase of 6 apartments by disability housing providers; the Transport Accident Commission (TAC) and Summer Foundation. These units provide an appropriate housing option for disabled persons while at the same time integrating seamlessly into an otherwise conventional apartment complex.
While private ownership has underpinned the financial viability of the project, the overall delivery has been a resounding success and establishes a clear model for providing social housing in mixed tenure developments into the future.
In recognition of the strong design and client outcomes achieved, the project was named winner "Best Affordable Development 2013" by the Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA).