A Great Example of Hidden Density

I wanted to share this ever since I recently moved back in June. One of my neighbouring buildings (on Haro St. between Chilco and Gilford St.) looks like this from the front:

Hidden Density 1 


Hidden Density 2


OK so nothing out of the ordinary, right?

Hidden Density 3

This beautiful building (built in 2001) is actually a multiple family dwelling of seven units.  This is a good example of density done well to borrow a phrase from Brent Toderian.  The density isn’t apparent, the design of the building hides the density.  When you walk by you think it is actually only two houses.  Architectural tools were used to maintain the scale and feeling of a single detached character home.  This building has many of the human scale design qualities outlined by Jan Gehl in Cities for People.  The front yard is 10 feet deep, the building is only two stories tall, there are multiple entrances, and a high level of detail makes the building visually pleasing and interesting.  Even the way different textures and colors are used in the front make it seem like two completely separate buildings.  

hidden density map

Good design has hidden the density in this building.  The photos below reveal the density.

 Hidden Density 6 Hidden Density 7 

Hidden density 8

Considerable attention was also given to the alley to make its residents truly proud to call this a home.

Hidden Density 5


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s