South Melbourne Market Roof

Council's brief for this project was to ameliorate the problems of rainwater leaks, heat load during summer and poor shopper amenity.

PMA's design solution is a contemporary interpretation of the area's vernacular roof profiles. South Melbourne has a rich history of industrial buildings with saw-tooth roof profiles, usually metal clad. Often when these rectilinear elevations meet the oblique plan forms of South Melbourne’s streets distinctive profiles emerge. In this scheme the roof plane was twisted to meet the same angle as Melbourne’s greater metropolitan grid. Additionally, this orientation is preferable for solar gain for the photovoltaic cells.

The resulting skew from the South Melbourne grid has resulted in triangular and rhomboidal figuration on the elevations. This contemporary interpretation of the saw-tooth roof thus contributes to the urban fabric by giving it contemporary form and narrating the differing scale of Melbourne's grids.

The design of this large urban artifact has additionally maximized the potential for solar power generation, and has facilitated the effective capture of storm water (750 kilolitres). Ideally, the strong profile of the roof on the skyline will act as a signifier for the market, and assist in strengthening of the market's identity over time.