151-159 Albion Street, Brunswick. Melbourne, Victoria

I find this row of five single storey worker terraces in Brunswick particularly interesting. Primarily because of its plain, almost moderne treatment which is a stark contrast to the spirit of many nearby boom Victorian terraces and houses.

Terrace Houses: 151-159 Albion Street, Brunswick. Melbourne, Victoria

Given the presence of a single urn on the parapet of the mid terrace house, it is reaonable to assume that this was the extent of the ornament, however the absence of cast iron lacework gives the impression that the terraces may have been modified during the interwar years. The profile of each house is by the elevated mid section of the parapet, placed neatly within the centre third of each and capped with a pair of urns and flanked by scrolls. This is about as decorative as this row gets. Horizontality is emphasized by a row of string courses, which run parallel to a shallow cornice, something used decades later in 1930s moderne architecture. The painted bands of the corrugated iron roof, typical of the area provide a striking visual contrast to the horizontal parapet, adding significant interest. The party walls provide some separation of the terraces on the facade and also bullnose out to frame the verandah. The front ends of each party wall are decorated by a subtle vermiculation but not much else.

The terraces are set back from the street and it becomes the role of the fence to define the front courtyard spaces. The variety of fences though somewhat detracts from the row and it is difficult to determine what the original style was. The variety in colour schemes adds some character to the row and the houses with painted parapets do more to show off the architecture than those painted in the plain white scheme.

These terraces have heritage protection under City of Moreland heritage overlay HO66.

One Response to “151-159 Albion Street, Brunswick. Melbourne, Victoria”

  • rohan:

    yes they look almost streamlined because only the cornice and string-coursing is left, picked out in parallel lines. However, as you note, they were altered at some time; there would at least have been pairs of urns on each, possibly also something on top of the dividing walls – lots of such details were removed from Victorian places over the years (sometimes becuase lack of maintenance meant they were about to fall off), but probably mostly it happened in the 1950s and 60s in order to ‘modernise’ them).

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