Located in a mixed-use urban center, the four-story, mid-century modern office building served as San Diego’s Blood Bank for nearly 40 years. Offering panoramic views of the city skyline, a central park, and a bay, the building inspired the conversion to loft apartments. Through adaptive reuse, preserving a landmark set the stage for a successful second act.
Originally built with open concrete coffered ceilings, columns, and floors, these classic elements were lost over the years when the floor plans were broken into small office spaces, covered with drywall, carpeting, and drop ceilings.
The goal was to create expansive, energy-efficient living units while exposing the interior structural elements, in order to create bold, clean, industrial lofts. To accomplish this, the concrete coffered ceilings were patched and sandblasted; the concrete floors were ground smooth and sealed; single-glazed windows were replaced with energy efficient, dual-glazed, floor-to-ceiling vinyl windows with a bronze finish; and new, energy-efficient mechanical and electrical systems were installed.
Designed to provide for a flexible work-live environment, the units provide 1,000-square-feet of living space with 11-foot ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows that include cleanly designed, modern, linear kitchens. The open floorplan allows the occupants to define an area that is either open to common spaces or separated with room dividers. Private exterior balconies, with floor-to-ceiling bi-fold glass doors, were also added; ground-floor units open out to private landscaped patios. The ground-floor commercial space was designed for the future addition of a restaurant, office, or retail space.
Preservation and adaptive reuse of this timeless structure have afforded a unique and innovative loft-living opportunity to urban professionals.