By Peter Haack | 13 Feb 2019

Our Urbis Design team takes pleasure in bringing the brightest minds together to push the boundaries and explore new ways of doing things.

Through divergent thinking, the team recently conceptualised, created and delivered an iconic, nature-inspired retaining wall as part of a project for the Chandler Highway Upgrade.

Take a closer look below at the process the team followed to develop this magnificent piece of infrastructure in Melbourne’s North.

Funded by the Victorian Government, this $110 million upgrade includes widening Chandler Highway and building a new six lane bridge next to the existing heritage bridge.

The Chandler Highway Upgrade currently under construction will improve traffic flow between Melbourne’s inner east, south and north.

Funded by the Victorian Government, this $110 million upgrade includes widening Chandler Highway and building a new six lane bridge next to the existing heritage bridge.

Urbis was engaged to design and deliver all landscape and urban design components of the project.

A key element was the design and construction of a major retaining wall, 300 metres in length and  running south/east of Chandler Highway and Yarra Boulevard. The total construction cost of the six metre high concrete retaining wall was $1.2 million.

The form, patterning and colour of the wall was inspired by the stratified sedimentary rock that naturally exists to the southern bank of the Yarra River.

Urbis’ conceptual design process involved a collaborative design session.

Urbis’ conceptual design process involved a collaborative design session.

This collective design approach provided significant value add to clients, utilising a wide range of talent to inject innovation and creativity at this early design phase.

The sketch concept design then proceeded to a phase of design development and construction documentation to ensure that the vision was realised on ground.

Urbis provided an intricately patterned 3D model for the fabrication of the concrete form work.

Urbis coordinated all 3D documentation of the wall, working closely with the civil and structural engineers. The parametres and design constraints were extremely technical, with the challenge of placing six metre high angled panels within a small tolerance of space, with changing topography and road alignment.

The panel pattern design was cleverly configured with the repetition of four interlocking panels, repeated for a length of 300 metres. Urbis provided an intricately patterned 3D model for the fabrication of the concrete form work. Test panels were inspected and approved prior to fabrication and installation on site.