Text description provided by the architects. Overton 19 is a carefully curated stand of eight functionally adaptable rental units. The development forms the edge of a formerly industrial parcel. The upright row of units, undertaken by the owner of a residential property to the west, will serve as a living garden wall protecting the owner’s house from the road noise and neighboring commercial uses. The project is comprised of five two-story loft spaces that can oscillate between primarily commercial and living space; two elevated residential units; and a glazed corner retail space.
The project formally employs one simple gesture—lifting the two corner units allows the project to respond to its urban condition at the intersection of a major commercial arterial, as well as to articulate the simple volumes for more specific uses. The façade takes the form of a veil to mediate a sense of both openness and privacy. Constructed with a rudimentary kit of parts, the façade allows for an economical glazed screen wall. The screen effectively begins at the curb by multiplying the density of the street tree planting zone and adding a grass planter at the front building plane to achieve the opposing requirements of privacy and natural light. Overton 19 has at its core the idea that elemental simplicity allows for complexity: in use and interpretation. A basic massing strategy can articulate simple forms into a more diverse programmatic assembly, and a reduced structural approach and programmatic efficiency can provide the required flexibility inherent in true hybrid space.
As a rental work/live development, the units need the ability to adapt to their intended use for each renter over the life of the project. By using heavy timber beams with structural wood decking, loft-like durable space was created at minimal cost. Support and service components were consolidated and arranged along one wall. The resulting programming and tectonic makes units that are open and adaptable yet tailored, in anticipation of a range of potential tenant needs.
Works Partnership Architecture is a progressive architectural design studio located in the Pacific Northwest. Carrie Strickland and William Neburka launched W.PA together in 2005. W.PA has since established a design approach rooted in clear conceptual diagrams applied across a wide spectrum of project types while responding to individual site, program, and environmental requirements. W.PA’s approach walks a line between sexy and stern and echoes simplicity in the face of ever evolving complexity, a quiet amid the cacophony of the newest. We work to find the simplicity in things; for in that simplicity there will be an economy of means, and in that economy there is often a truth. And in that truth, there can be a profound beauty.