All Season Housing

The form steps down at the stair to break the scale of the long-side of the project


Bringing straw to Boston’s
affordable housing

From the 1880s to the 1930s the “triple decker” - three stacked flats, typically owned by one of the families living there - provided a pathway to affordable home-ownership for Boston’s recent immigrants. Unfortunately, 100 years later, the economics have changed. At this point, the City needs a denser housing model that productively builds on that legacy.

As part of the “Future Decker” competition, the City will donate land to the winning team for development into 80–100% area median income (AMI) affordable home-ownership units.

Our 8-unit proposal reimagines the triple decker’s perfunctory stair as a hub that economically fosters community. The stair abuts a south-facing “all-season” room for shared meals, resident gatherings, and plants.




Ground Floor Plan
From left to right:
  • Covered Parking 
  • Studio Unit
  • Bike Storage 
  • Lobby 
  • All-Season Sunroom / Patio
  • Three-Bed Unit 
  • Communal Planter




The neighborhood’s home to many colorful, clapboard buildings, so we embraced that. Generally, we never want our projects to be ostentatious; we want them to integrate and reveal themselves over time.



The project is a mix of conventional clapboard & vertical siding; a cost effective, subtle way to add texture


The stair abuts a two-story sunroom; part community-builder, part antidote to Boston’s loooooong winters




Third Floor Plan
The central stair looks in to—or in this case, on to—a communal, greenhouse-like sunroom. The units’ living spaces are at the corners to capitalize on natural light & cross ventilation.





The stair links 3 three-bed units in the front to 3 studios and 2 two-beds in the back



Sponsor

City of Boston

Timeline

2024-

Status

Competition

Location

Dorchester, Massachusetts

Services

Architecture
Interior Design

Credits

African Community Economic Development Corporation (ACEDONE),
Community Outreach & Homeowner Engagement Consultant

Chess Engineering,
Civil Engineering

Croft,
Prefab Consultant & Straw Panel Provider

JGE Architecture + Design,
Design Advisor

LB Development Partners,
Development Consultant

Passive to Positive,
Sustainability Consultant

Pristine Engineers,
MEP-FP Engineering

RSE Associates,
Structural Engineer

Star Contracting Co,
Construction Management


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