*Tickets for this building open 28 September at 9am through the booking link on this page. Please note that there are only 180 free tickets available.
Built from 1959-1961, Torbreck introduced a new concept of modern living to Brisbane and epitomised the city’s coming of age. The building’s inception and design were innovative in many ways. The project was initiated as a speculative home-unit
development. It was Queensland’s first company titled multi-storey residential building, and the first use of the reinforced concrete lift slab construction technique in the state. Torbreck was extensively marketed and many of the original 137 units were sold off the plan. It offered a range of unit types appealing to a spectrum of the community, from affordable studios to three bedroom units suitable for families. This reconceptualization of residential living in Brisbane prompted a rethinking of fire regulations in relation to this new housing type, and a relaxation of height limits.
Torbreck’s architectural design by Aubrey H Job and RP Froud (Job and Froud) combined the point block and linear block multi-storey residential forms of the well-known French architect Le Corbusier, demonstrating the influence of international modernism in Australia. The resulting Tower and Garden Blocks were to be linked by an arcade of shops, offices and a residents’ lounge, features of the design that were never realised. At the time it represented a well-designed alternative to Brisbane’s steadily expanding suburban sprawl. Torbreck’s light-filled and spacious interiors, climatic responsiveness, sense of privacy, and playful use of materials and colour are enduring qualities that make it a popular place to live. Its crowning observation deck continues to cut a distinctive figure on the city skyline.
Private apartments and observatories
Limited wheelchair access
AIA Queensland Chapter - Enduring Architecture Award 2014