Eco Modern Flats is a gut rehab of four similar apartment buildings built between 1968 and 1972. Our client's goals for the renovation were to deliver a product not currently available in the local market'modern, urban, green multifamily rentals'and to save operations costs through energy and water-saving updates. The renovated buildings were each certified LEED Platinum.
A success by many measures, eco is a fully leased property, with a waiting list for new residents. Our client cut utility costs by half, and the project has been honored with local, national, and international recognition. A less quantifiable, but tangible result has been the true sense of community fostered by the new design. We saw an opportunity to reimagine healthy interior space, creating open and light-filled studios. Spatially efficient, sustainable strategies are expressed playfully; each tenant chooses a modern, no-VOC paint color for his or her kitchen, and a central multipurpose wall provides built-in storage that contains a rotating TV module to be viewed from the kitchen, living, and bedroom spaces'or to disappear behind a bookshelf. Enlarged windows and new sliding glass doors add circulation and much needed natural light to each space.
Outdoors, the landscape design creates new spaces for outdoor living in a symbiotic relationship with the buildings, tenants, and nature. Serpentine retaining walls address erosion on the sloping site and carve out new patio areas for ground level units. Steel and cedar armatures create public and private rooftop terraces and balconies. The former laundry facility was transformed into a leasing office, restrooms, and pool cabana surrounded by prairie plantings. Low-tech sustainable solutions including a vegetated steel-cable trellis system and freestanding cisterns fashioned from steel culverts add high function and visual appeal at low cost.