Award-winning designer and television personality Jamie Durie visited Canberra on Friday to give residents of Wright’s Observatory Living development a tour of their newly completed grounds.

Durie designed the sprawling hectare of landscaping throughout the Geocon development, which features lush greenery, deciduous trees, breakout entertaining spaces, fire pits and a red-tiled swimming pool.

“Giving people a reason to come out into the landscape is as important as the landscape itself,” Durie said.

“There’s no use in just building a pretty garden that’s good to look at, we build gardens for people to live in. We look at all the rooms in the house and we translate those to exterior landscapes.”

The 270-unit development sold out well before construction was complete with the first residents moving into their new homes late last year.

Independent Property Group Woden agent Adam Morgan said the development was a huge success and the on-site amenities were a major attraction for buyers.

“Observatory Living has put an emphasis on community living with its exceptional shared amenities that have really brought people together,” Mr Morgan said.

“It’s a really exciting development and we are looking forward to what’s coming up next with Geocon.”

Geocon managing director Nick Georgalis​ described the grounds as one of the most ambitious landscape projects in Canberra.

“It’s big deal for such a large development,” Mr Georgalis said.

“What you have is a community, not an apartment complex, and you can see that in the areas that promote communities hanging out.”

Durie said plants were chosen to embrace Canberra’s changing seasons and red was intentionally chosen to showcase the greenery and add warmth.

“The Observatory design combines the unique feel of Canberra’s space and proximity to the bush with vibrant, contemporary colours and forms that draw the eye and spark visual curiosity,” Durie said.

Mr Georgalis said the complex was a great example of what could be achieved in high-density developments.

“Observatory Living is a fantastic urban design outcome for Canberra’s newest residential precinct,” Mr Georgalis said.

“We’ve invested in unique features like Jamie’s wonderful landscape architecture, which make all the difference between a block of ugly flats and a place where people are delighted to live.

“In terms of sustainability, this development demonstrates the benchmark in maximising liveability while minimising land uptake and urban sprawl.”


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