The final AVA H Street design contains several unexpected and unique architectural features. It attempts to be more timeless in nature, rather than solely progressive. The look is set in a largely monochromatic palette of charcoal grey brick, anodized aluminum metal cladding, and white horizontal siding. A few bold color pops accentuate the forms that either protrude out of the main volume or are carved into it.
It’s true, a reference to the traditional base-middle-top visual hierarchy emerges. But that system is often disrupted or reinterpreted, as many of the residential units seemingly float above the glassy ground level “base” and often the formal “top” disintegrates or even disappears.
The main entry is a play on indoor/outdoor space as interior and exterior treatments seamlessly transition from inside to outside through the plane of storefront glazing.
The building’s goal is to feel like an integrated piece of the H-Street neighborhood’s urban fabric, while at the same time contributes to the dialogue of contemporary residential architectural expression. It is a combination that will hopefully resound with its target Gen Y population in addition to its location and program.
If you want to see how this design came about, check out this article where I discuss three early designs of H Street. And in this Q&A, AvalonBay's Jon Cox and I discuss some of the factors that informed our approach.