A Community of Friends
235 South Berendo
Project Requirements
Renovate an existing deteriorated apartment building and convert it into twenty-four affordable housing units. Create a manager's apartment, common facilities, and redesign unit layouts. The programatic concern for this project was to develop a residential mini-community with support services for adults with mental disabilities. The primary design challenge was to find and configure space to satisfy the client's program within the constraints of an existing structure and a limited budget, typical in serviced enriched affordable housing development.
Project Solution
The new floor plan systematizes the units along an "art gallery" corridor. Apartment entries are grouped together in vestibules at either end of the "gallery." The semi-subterranean basement and backyard were excavated to create an amphitheater-like sunken patio, with light filled community rooms below the first floor. New vertical circulation and a front porch with a patio garden provide informal "hang out" spaces and a singular identity for the building and its residents. Year completed: 1996