On The Market
Kevin Borland (1926-2000) was an Australian architect recognised for his local interpretation of international modernist design, as seen in this Kew home for sale.
The prolific architect spent time working on the Small Homes Service (under tutor Robin Boyd), and designed prominent buildings such as the Harold Holt Memorial Swimming Centre, the 1956 Olympic Swimming Pool alongside Peter McIntyre, and the heritage listed 1950s Rice House in Eltham.
This particular house in Kew has been flying under the radar until now, as it’s been owned by the one family since 1973.
After 50 years, the original owners’ children have placed the property on the market for the first time.
38 Young Street, Kew is remarkable for its virtually untouched architecture, location on the Yarra River, and huge 3,227 square metre site originally landscaped by Gordon Ford — one of Australia’s most innovative landscape architects.
Don Gallagher lived in the home growing up from nine years of age. He recalls Kevin visiting his parents during the design stage.
‘I remember Kevin coming over for dinner and drinks and making a point of including my brother, sister, and I in working up the brief,’ Don says.
‘I was asked what I wanted and I answered a two-storey bedroom — and it was delivered!’ (See mezzanine levels accessed via ladders in all three of the children’s bedrooms).
‘My mum wanted sunlight. The house always has shafts of light coming from unexpected angles at all times of day and the differing times of year… Kevin took time out to see how we lived as a family, on our turf.’
Don describes the house as being ‘built like a pier’ to be raised above flood levels and into the tree canopy.
Communal spaces are all oriented north or west, and the home includes four bedrooms, plus a study, and two bathrooms.
‘Good engineering and architecture combined to create a cost effective home on a challenging block. The house still retains nearly all the original finishes, fixtures, fittings and blinds,’ says Don.
He will always cherish the memories made on the property that provided plenty of space for games, pets, and playing in the river. ‘The only rule was to hose off the Yarra before coming inside!
‘I hope that the new owners have as much fun as we did.’