David Baker Architects

Williams Terrace Senior Housing


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The building is organized around a courtyard with multi level open air circulation. Image: David Baker Architects

Williams Terrace Senior Housing will be the first dedicated housing for low-income seniors in the city of Charleston, South Carolina. DBA is collaborating with local firm McMillan Pazdan Smith to create this gracious senior building, which finally replaces affordable family housing destroyed in a 1989 hurricane.

We are working with the Housing Authority of the City of Charleston to create a dynamic building that meets the challenges of the site—located in a high-velocity flood zone—and respects the gracious built fabric of downtown historic Charleston.

The building is designed with external circulation—deep porches that create opportunities for connection and are lined with exterior seating to encourage interaction among the residents. The building’s units, porches, and rooftop terrace community room will enjoy views across the new park toward the Charleston harbor.

 

The inspiration behind the Charleston Housing Authority.

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Williams Terrace under construction, as seen from the south. Image: Matt Coda/Vive Media Aerial Photography

Aerial view of Williams Terrace Senior Housing. Image: McMillan Pazdan Smith

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The base of the building features a Community Screen Porch fronting the new park. Image: DBA

Gadsdenboro Park

The building’s ground level “screen porch” fronts the new city park and connects directly to it via a shaded public sidewalk, making for an active ground floor in spite of the requirement that no permanent uses can be located there do to this being a flood zone, with a velocity component, so eveything at grade needs to able to be swept away during a hurricane.

 

A newly renovated park will be a showcase for this hurricane-damaged neighborhood. Image: DBA

DIAGRAM 01 The open porch/circulation is a traditional Charleston Single House element, called a "PIAZZA".

Porch

Charleston "Single Houses" are characterized by their open air circulation Piazzas, which function in a similar way to porches. The corridors of Williams Terrace interpret this concept with wide open air circulation that functions as social space for the senior residents.

Isolation is a primary concern in senior housing. Here, open circulation and community porches create opportunities for connection. Image: DBA

DIAGRAM 03 The residential walls are clad in traditional lime washed brick.

DIAGRAM 02 Sliding shutters will provide adjustable shading for the multi-level circulation porch, or Piazza.

Shutters

Taking a cue from the historic louvered shutters found on Charleston’s Piazzas, sliding screens will allow residents to adjust the amount of shade desired. This will create an ever-changing, dynamic façade. The lime-washed brick exterior will create another connection with Charleston’s historic past.

DIAGRAM 04 The community room and terrace are located on the roof to comply with the flood zone.

Roof plan.

The rooftop terrace and community room overlook the new park, with views out toward Charleston's harbor.

Rooftop Terrace

To avoid flood damage the community room is located on the roof. The bonus will be wonderful views across historic Charleston.

Third-level plan.

Site plan.

The inspiration behind the Charleston Housing Authority.

Aerial view of Williams Terrace Senior Housing. Image: McMillan Pazdan Smith

A newly renovated park will be a showcase for this hurricane-damaged neighborhood. Image: DBA

View from the corner of Laurens and Washington. Image: DBA

View from Laurens Street. Image: DBA

View from the corner of Washington and Inspection. Image: DBA

The building is organized around a courtyard with multi level open air circulation. Image: David Baker Architects

The base of the building features a Community Screen Porch fronting the new park. Image: DBA

Isolation is a primary concern in senior housing. Here, open circulation and community porches create opportunities for connection. Image: DBA

The rooftop terrace and community room overlook the new park, with views out toward Charleston's harbor.

DIAGRAM 00 Composite

DIAGRAM 01 The open porch/circulation is a traditional Charleston Single House element, called a "PIAZZA".

DIAGRAM 02 Sliding shutters will provide adjustable shading for the multi-level circulation porch, or Piazza.

DIAGRAM 03 The residential walls are clad in traditional lime washed brick.

DIAGRAM 04 The community room and terrace are located on the roof to comply with the flood zone.

An early concept sketch of the "Shotguns in the Sky" scheme by David Baker.

An early ground level plan sketch by db.

Sunshade analysis.

Site plan.

Third-level plan.

Roof plan.

Williams Terrace as it relates to the park and the harbor.

Concord Park plan.

The McMillan Pazdan Smith team represent at the Williams Terrace Senior Housing groundbreaking ceremony.

Williams Terrace under construction, as seen from the south. Image: Matt Coda/Vive Media Aerial Photography

project details

Category

Affordable Housing, Apartments, Senior Housing, Under Construction

​Location

Charleston, South Carolina

Developer

Housing Authority of the City of Charleston

Architect

David Baker Architects

Architect

McMillan Pazdan Smith Architecture

Permalink

dbarchitect.com/WilliamsTerrace

project data
Williams Terrace 21216
Charleston, South Carolina
Under construction
number of units
1 bedroom 41
total 41
density ratios
project sf 47,851
site sf 18,274
acres 0.42
total bedrooms 41
bedrooms/acre  97.61
units/acre  97.61
parking
total 22
garage 13
street 9
spaces/unit 0.53