It has been a fantastic week with Stuart Harrison, sneaking a look into his new book! Congratulations to Jessica and Brenton who are the lucky winners of a copy each – enjoy! Be sure to keep an eye out at a book shop near you, Forty-six Square Metres of Land Doesn’t Normally Become A House is due out early November. Thanks again Stuart! – Jenny x

Fitzroy Apartments as seen in Forty Six Square Metres of Land Doesn’t Normally Become A House. All photos – Peter Bennetts

As the book gets towards the back, and the sites get bigger, more of the multi-residential projects come into play. I was very keen to showcase some sites where there are now multiple dwellings – and to prove that densification doesn’t mean bad design. In fact, as cities densify, as we move more toward different and hopefully new types of housing, design becomes all the more important. This makes great examples of medium density living vital.

All photos – Peter Bennetts

This building was one of reasons I wanted to do this book. It’s called Fitzroy Apartments in the famous and now pretty gentrified suburb in Melbourne. Designed by NMBW architecture studio, the dwellings themselves are a maybe a new type – both apartments and houses, seeking to draw from the benefits of both. Each one has a front door, that’s a good thing that houses offer, and here that is via a great arcade space on the ground floor that is both for people and cars. The garages are glass, more like shops so they could be used for something far more interesting than car storage.

Like apartments, all seven of them have views, aspect across the suburb and to the city and street. But they are not too small like so many apartments – there is enough space for kids, storage, and critically for outdoor living. If we are going to continue to live in the city and less in the suburb, it’s in places like this that we can offer the best of both worlds.

All photos – Peter Bennetts

It’s been great sharing some thoughts on design and housing with you – if you’re keen on the sound of the book, it’s out in early November from most places (we hope!). It’s published by the fine folk at Thames and Hudson. Architext in Melbourne and Sydney will have it, as well as Readings of course.

- Stuart