A shallow piece of land bordered by streets on 3 sides challenged the design team to find a way to creatively maximize the number of residential units on the urban infill site. Along with this overall requirement were the additional goals of incorporating a street level pedestrian friendly base and providing for all required parking (residential and retail) within the confines of the new complex.
After reviews of many different options, the team settled on a solution that utilizes a one way helix parking deck embedded into the center of the site. This narrower type of parking layout allowed for corridors and units to line each side of the deck creating an opportunity for appropriate street fronting facades as well as maximizing the overall density. Due to the tight site constraints the design also utilized a unique façade treatment that depended on the vertical shifting of windows and the addition of decorative fins to create a dynamic patterning on the long street facing plane. Given the generous length of the site this solution allowed for the creation of a grand residential courtyard (with amenities that include a pool, an outdoor kitchen, an exercise room and a clubroom) which provides a welcome respite from the busy urban street scene fronting the project.
Other design innovations include the utilization of smaller than typical unit sizes which help to further increase the quantity of apartments and also allow for a lower monthly price point for the rentals. The use of open floor plans, 10’ tall ceilings, and full height windows combine to create units that feel more spacious than their small foot prints would suggest.
The completed project contains 282 units and 15,000 sf of retail space in just over 250,000 sf of heated area with a maximum height of 8 stories. With a site area of 106,975 sf the density ratio is 115 units/acre. Construction is a combination of post tensioned concrete and metal stud bearing walls which allowed for the extra height and resulted in a more durable and longer lasting product. The main street frontage is immediately activated by placing both the residential entry lobby and leasing office front and center. Longer term a variety of retail and/or restaurant tenants will fill the new spaces to further enliven this already vibrant part of town. Along the secondary back street, the building base is activated by the exercise room and a row of double height live/work units.
The building has already nicely filled in this “missing tooth” of the urban fabric and is being well accepted by the marketplace with leasing progressing ahead of schedule.