Fitzroy Bridge House

Matt Gibson Architecture + Design

Fitzroy Bridge House is an impressive conversion project in Melbourne’s South Fitzroy heritage precinct. Designed for a young family with a deep connection to the original building’s history, this conversion celebrates the site’s legacy while accommodating modern family living on a challenging site.

Instead of a conventional addition, the design opted for a series of separate yet similar buildings, reminiscent of traditional Mews structures. They house sleeping quarters above a linked open breezeway that contains flexible living spaces and connects two courtyards. A glass bridge traverses the sequence, enhancing privacy, solar access and visual connections between levels.

The project stands out by preserving and restoring the original masonry facade, maintaining the character of the neighbourhood. The use of repeated arched windows and locally inspired brickwork establishes consistency and harmony between the buildings. This unconventional arrangement unlocks the courtyard, offering both privacy and borrowed amenity while overlooking a beautifully landscaped garden.

The design addresses contemporary sustainability imperatives through passive energy initiatives, recycled materials, water collection tanks and solar technologies. It maximises natural light, cross ventilation and integrates landscaping into the architectural solution, promoting the well-being and health of the occupants. By preserving the cultural heritage and implementing sustainable design principles, Fitzroy Bridge House sets a progressive example in its category.


Furniture: Tait, Wood Melbourne, Otomys Gallery, B&B Italia, Space Furniture, Ames, Halcyon Lake, Something Beginning With, The Plant Society, Hay, Cult Furniture, Fred International, Camm Upholstery, Ariake, Apato, Hub Furniture, James Makin Gallery, Poliform, Loom Rugs, Grazia & Co, Niagara Gallery, Gervasoni, Anibou, Design Stuff, Ligne Roset, Domo, Angelucci 20th Century, Armadillo & Co, Outstation gallery, Designer Rugs, Jardan, Mubu Home, Living Edge. Lighting: Handvard, Fred International, Hub Furniture, Volker Haug, Cult Design, Eurolucem, Inlite, Anchor, Ceramics, Criteria Collection, Trizo21, Great Dane. Finishes: Taubmans, Dulux, Trusted Tiles, Bespoke Stone, Austral Bricks, Dinesen, Unique Fabrics, Clearview Sun Control, Urban Salvage, Eveneer, Keenan Harris, Xtreme Marble. Fittings & Fixtures: Wolf, Qasair, Miele, KWC Swiss, Franke, ZIP, Brodware, Big River Group, Instyle, Stonetile industries, Duravit, Apaiser, Astrawalker, Rogerseller, Perini, Roca, Gerberit, Beefeater, Pitella.


Photography: Derek Swalwell