David Baker Architects

2015 MFE Concept Community: Baby Boomerang


Slideshow | Details
Fullwidth image

Image: David Baker Architects


PDF IconMfeconceptcommunity2015

The name "Baby Boomerang" was chosen by MFE to convey the return of the enormous Boomer generation back into the rental fold. Over the next decade, more than half of all new renter households are expected to be Boomer households.

MultiFamily Executive Magazine invited DBA to envision and design the fourth annual Concept Community, a prototype study for housing for a particular demographic. Previous years created housing concepts for millennials and students: This year, it was the Boomers' turn.
 
DBA's approach to the Concept Community is based on the idea of a healthy community—not just a healthy building, but also a healthy neighborhood—that supports a high quality of life. The overarching principles include promoting physical activity, supporting bicycling, preserving access to fresh food, embracing nature, and fostering community.
 
We selected a site in Seattle's University District. We chose the university setting because Boomers have a lot to contribute to a university community, and they can they can get a lot out of it as well—including taking classes and accessing the area's concentrated amenities.
 
 
 
VIRTUAL TOUR

2015 MFE Concept Community from David Baker Architects on Vimeo.

SITE

The 2.5-acre site is in a very mixed-use context, with taller buildings, a hotel, new apartments, a grocery store, and other uses nearby. This site places the Boomer community right in the middle of things, within a block of the "main drag." University Way is filled with shops and restaurants and has a transit line running along it, so everything this community needs is easily available.

We chose to use just half of the available site, adding a publicly accessible park at the center of the block and reserving space for future buildings to ensure the site remains a central and dynamic location. 

The main entry provides a great landmark with a lobby cafe and double-height common spaces. Image: David Baker Architects

DESIGN

The project's 153 homes range from small studios to two-bedroom units. The studios can serve as guest quarters for visitors for residents who live there or allow someone to downsize into a smaller, more affordable unit without having to leave the community. The smaller units allow for independent living and are balanced by the prime location and generous common spaces.

The homes line one side of a sheltered corridor that features dramatic outward views on the other side. The single-loaded corridor “flips” back and forth, and wherever the changes in direction happen, there is a common hub for socializing or hosting activities.

Single-loaded corridors dotted with "greenwells" bring in light and views. Image: David Baker Architects

PARK

The park at the center of the site breaks the block into manageable pieces and creates a pedestrian scale. The building steps down from the high side of the site to the low side of the site. The roof deck features urban agriculture, and the park design is focused on active uses and fitness.

The amenities throughout the project are oriented toward health and wellness, such as yoga and meditation rooms, bicycle parking and repair facilities, and ways to support people having pets as part of the community—such as an on-site dog-wash.

The building features a roof deck with urban agriculture and a publicly accessible park focused on active uses and fitness. Image: David Baker Architects

View from the fully accessible park into the Wellness Center. Image: David Baker Architects

PRESENTATION

Principal Amit C. Price Patel led DBA's Concept Community team and presented the final vision at the Multifamily Executive Conference in Las Vegas in October 2015.

Watch the presentation here or below.

Image: David Baker Architects

The main entry provides a great landmark with a lobby cafe and double-height common spaces. Image: David Baker Architects

The design employs a simple materials palette of brick, steel, and glass. Image: David Baker Architects

Flex units on the ground floor keep the sidewalk active with residential and commercial uses. Image: David Baker Architects

Portals provide bicycle parking, opportunities for artwork, and physical access to the park beyond. Image: David Baker Architects

Double-height community spaces punctuate the long corridor and serve as social hubs. Image: David Baker Architects

Single-loaded corridors dotted with "greenwells" bring in light and views. Image: David Baker Architects

The building features a roof deck with urban agriculture and a publicly accessible park focused on active uses and fitness. Image: David Baker Architects

View from the fully accessible park into the Wellness Center. Image: David Baker Architects

All units open onto a shared walkway with "greenwells" and views, and overlook the park to the rear. Image: David Baker Architects

project details

Category

All Projects, Senior Housing, Unbuilt

​Location

Seattle, Washington

Development Consultant

Holland Residential

Development Consultant

Multifamily Executive Magazine

Architect

David Baker Architects

Data Partner

J Turner Research

Permalink

dbarchitect.com/MFEConceptCommunity

 

project data
2015 MFE Concept Community P1506
4501 Brooklyn Avenue NE + 4530 12th Avenue NE
Seattle, Washington
Conceptual
number of units
studio 22
1 bedroom 90
2 bedroom 32
flex 9
total 153
density ratios
site sf 86,255
acres 1.98
total bedrooms 167
bedrooms/acre 84
units/acre 77
parking
total 153
spaces/unit 1
type garage
community space
community space sf 10,000