Multifamily / Merit
Fletcher Farr Ayotte faced a contextual conundrum when it agreed to design a high-end, five-unit infill project in Portland. On one side of the site sat a contemporary-style apartment complex; on the other, a turn-of-the-century, Arts and Crafts house. To further complicate matters, the latter happened to belong to the firm's developer client, who'd decided to keep his first multifamily endeavor close to home.
Architects Dale Farr, AIA, Kevin Cavenaugh, and Brett Schulz turned to the Arts and Crafts style to help them finesse this tricky situation. Inspired by the work of Wade Pipes, an architect who practiced in Portland from the 1920s to the 1960s, they used shingles and stucco, steeply pitched roofs, and clean, simple detailing to bridge the gap between old and new. A clever site plan divides the project into groups of three and two units. "The three-unit section is designed to look like a main house, and the two-unit one resembles a carriage house," says Schulz. The judges gave their approach a thumbs-up for its uniqueness and creativity.