Featured in Architecture and Design: Another prefab skyscraper project on the horizon for Melbourne

Melbourne will be home to another prefabricated skyscraper, with the latest addition being a Hayball-designed student accommodation building that will top out at 150 metres.

Joining Rothelowman’s La Trobe Tower, 42-50 La Trobe Street will make use of Hickory Group’s Hickory Building System (HBS) that utilises offsite manufacturing for the majority of building components.

Floor slabs, facades and Hickory’s Sync bathroom pod system will be manufactured offsite, and then trucked to 42-50 La Trobe Street for final assembly.

With a gross floor area approaching 25,000sqm, 42-50 La Trobe Street is slated to be delivered eight months faster than traditional construction methods would allow, resulting in a 30 per cent saving over conventional construction methods.

Similar to La Trobe Tower, 42-50 La Trobe Street will employ an electric crane to lift the modules into place outside of traditional work hours, minimising traffic disruption and site congestion.

The new project will see a 43-level tower, with a smaller seven-level building to the rear of the site. Combined, they will house 783 student beds. The building will also include a ground floor café, numerous communal spaces, terraces and collaborative learning spaces.

The building is expected to become one of the world’s tallest student accommodation projects delivered via non-traditional construction methods. 

Nicholas Rider, Architecture and Design.

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