31 Mar 23

Younghusband – landmark adaptive reuse project begins in Melbourne

Younghusband exterior Chelmsford St

Architecture studio Woods Bagot has welcomed the start of construction at Younghusband, a former wool store set to become Melbourne’s largest carbon-neutral adaptive reuse precinct.

Clients Built, Irongate and Ivanhoe Cambridge bought the 1.57 hectare inner-west Kensington site one year ago, upgrading design and sustainability aspects of the project ahead of this week’s launch.

Woods Bagot Principal and architect Peter Miglis, who has been involved with Younghusband since 2016, is passionate about the project, designed to capture the site’s rich history while delivering future-forward A-Grade office and retail space.

“The design approach is to ‘lightly touch’ the existing wool store buildings, respecting the past while providing contemporary interventions for the next evolution of the buildings’ life,” Miglis said.

“Thoughtful modifications have been made to the floor plates to bring light into spaces and create visual connections through new insertions such as glass lifts and link bridges.

“Our strategy of reusing existing structure and materials, while utilizing natural energy assets through solar panels and rainwater harvesting, reduces the embodied carbon emissions and enable us to achieve carbon neutral status.”



Peter Miglis, Principal, Woods Bagot and Deputy Lord Mayor of Melbourne Nicholas Reece at Younghusband construction launch.


Render of Younghusband commercial entry lobby.

Built Managing Director and CEO Brett Mason said tenants are being sought for stage one, which offers first-mover advantage in the up-and-coming Macaulay precinct and some of the largest flexible floor plates in the city.

“Younghusband will be Melbourne’s largest carbon-neutral adaptive reuse precinct, reimagining and revitalising one of the city’s largest heritage sites, creating a connected and sustainable destination for work and play,” Mr Mason said.

Stage one delivers 17,560 square metres of A-grade office space, adding a new town centre, village-style food and beverage offerings with an activated retail laneway creating communal energy. It is due to complete mid-2024.

Visit the project page for further information and images

Martin Kelly
Content and Communications Leader (Australia & New Zealand)
Woods Bagot

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