TURNER has made another mark in the architecture and interior design sphere by winning a Good Design Award. The Sydney-based firm was honoured in the Architectural Design category for its work on the Meridian Miranda project, a residential development that aims to provide essential workers with affordable yet high-quality housing options.

Located approximately 30 kilometres south of Sydney’s central business district, Miranda’s housing rates are increasingly pricing out Australians, and the area’s prices are already significantly higher than metropolitan Sydney’s. This economic landscape has particularly impacted essential workers, who often find the cost of living prohibitively expensive. Aware Real Estate owns the Meridian Miranda development and partnered with Altis Property Partners to deliver the project.

The Meridian Miranda development does not sacrifice aesthetic value for functionality: “Essential worker apartments need to work well from an operational point of view, but they also need to be beautiful and appeal to the needs of their target demographics,” says TURNER director, James McCarthy. Of the development’s 102 apartments, 50 per cent are earmarked for essential workers in sectors like aged care, health care, emergency services and education.

The focus on design and aesthetic elements is evident throughout the project: “We were looking to create a luxurious feel to the apartments,” says Altis Property Partners project director, Joseph Ajaka, emphasising the importance placed on space, finishes and meticulous detail in the overall design. Consistency is key — the level of finish and specifications are maintained across both the affordable rental units and the private residential ones.

McCarthy adds: “It was critical to the architects and client that the level of finish and specification did not vary between the affordable rental building and the private housing component.”

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Design decisions for the Meridian Miranda project were informed by extensive research. According to McCarthy, research involving future residents helps tailor apartments to user preferences and needs. This results in “projects highly in tune with the market’s needs.” Therefore, the design elements are not solely aesthetic but also cater to the functional requirements and preferences of the residents.

The Meridian Miranda project is an example of a residential development where high-quality design coexists with social responsibility. The design philosophy integrates essential features for attracting and retaining tenants in the long term. McCarthy concludes: “Creating community, attracting tenants and designing buildings that are easy to maintain in the long-term is paramount.”

TURNER
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