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This ultra-thin Melbourne skyscraper is part of an amazing global architecture trend

An artist’s impression of the Collins House residential tower (right) in Melbourne. Photo: Supplied.

Melbourne will soon be home to one of the world’s thinnest skyscrapers.

Residential tower Collins House is part of a new design ethic dubbed “skinnyscrapers”, and is 183-metres tall but just 11.8-metres wide.

The $200 million luxury complex, which is under construction, is designed by Australian architecture firm Bates Smart and developed by Golden Age Group with plans to be completed in 2018.

It will feature 267 one, two and three bedroom apartments as well as sub penthouses and penthouses spanning across 57 storeys.

“It’s the slimmest by far — there isn’t anything similar in Australia,” says Bates Smart design director of the project Kristen Whittle.

“The only ones similar in the world would be in New York and possibly a few in Hong Kong.”

The building starts off with a width of 11.8 metres at the bottom and by the fifteenth floor, the building expands another 4.5 metres bringing the total width to 16.3 metres.

Photo: Supplied.

The style has grown in appeal for developers in areas with high land values. Recent examples include Hong Kong’s Highcliff and The Summit, already nicknamed “The Chopsticks”, and plans for the Renzo Piano-designed “Skinny Shard” in London.

New York already boasts a number of such buildings including 56 Leonard with a width-to-height ratio of 1:10:5 and One Madison Park, which is approximately 15 metres wide.

Another toothpick-like building is also planned for New York with a proposed width of 14.3 metres.

To classify as a “skinnyscraper” the aspect ratio – the height of the building by its width – has to be greater than 1:10. Collins House will have a ratio of 1:15:5, making it one of the slimmest in the world.

“We are building for people who are wanting more personalised vertical apartment buildings, there’s a market for that,” says Whittle.

The Melbourne site is just 12.5 metres wide which explains why the developer, Golden Age Group, had to buy air rights to expand the building.

However, the design is surprising considering Melbourne’s density still falls short of the international scale with around 10,000 residents per square kilometre for this kind of development. Cities such as London have around 20,000 residents per square kilometre.

Photo: Supplied.

Whittle said he expects more slim tower designs to go ahead with increased demand for space in global cities.

“The cities around the world, especially around the Asia Pacific where land value is increasing in the CBD, where people are also seeking to live and work in the city will see more of this type of building especially as technology becomes more fully understood.”

Here are some more photos of the project below.

Collins House will be one of the thinnest skyscrapers in the world with a height of 183.25 metres and width of 11.81 metres -- an aspect ratio of 1:15:5.

Photo: Supplied.

The luxury residential tower will include one, two and three-bedroom apartments including multiple-storey lofts and penthouses.

Photo: Supplied.

The modern building will be situated in the heart of Melbourne CBD in close proximity to the Melbourne City Town Hall, Emporium, Queen Victoria Market as well as Victoria University.

Photo: Supplied.

The building will also include Art Nouveau detailing from the original 1908 building with brickwork and bluestone making up part of the exterior.

Photo: Supplied.

The penthouses will feature three bedrooms, three bathrooms, a study as well as a powder room.

Photo: Supplied.

All of the apartments will have fittings in timber, stone and brass including oak floorboards, marble splashbacks and pendant lighting.

Photo: Supplied.

It sets a new benchmark for residential developments in Australia.

Photo: Supplied.

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