Masterfully achieving modern architectural styles in multifamily designs takes expertise and patience, especially when a tight budget competes with other design goals like staying on top of trends, addressing resident preferences, and seamlessly incorporating a desired look into a community.
Dominic Rigosu of RIDA Architecture, PLLC, balanced all of these factors in a recent project. He designed Woodrow Wilson Townhomes, a 100-unit affordable housing development originally built in 1972 in Amsterdam, New York. It was surrounded by a mix of market-rate, well-maintained, single-family homes.
Here are Rigosu’s top three tips for approaching modern multifamily design while remaining budget-conscious.
Play off of current architectural styles
When beginning a new design project, it's crucial to examine the different architectural styles already in place. Rigosu quickly noticed that the existing architectural style of the homes already lent itself to a modern design. He wouldn't have to rebuild completely; instead, he kept the framework but accomplished contemporary design by using LP® SmartSide® Trim & Siding and mixing paint colors across different building materials.
"Transforming the buildings required a holistic design that addressed the site, apartment surroundings, interior finishes and exterior design. The focus wasn't just on the townhomes; it was on the community as a whole," Rigosu commented.
Treat the project as a blank canvas
Modern architectural styles don't have to be expensive. When treating your project like a blank canvas, you'll free it up to unique design solutions. Rigosu says this approach is key not to overdoing either design or spending. In addition to utilizing a bulk of stock LP SmartSide Trim & Siding products to create an original look, Rigosu advises multifamily architects to “think outside the box around how to apply building products to fit the unique needs of a multifamily design and not view a budget as a restraint but as a challenge to get creative.”
Choose the right materials for durability
By choosing trusted materials to fit a specific architectural style, your project will result in a long-term investment. Rigosu used stock products from the LP SmartSide Trim & Siding line and transformed them into a design that was still affordable while presenting a unique look. He says, "The creative design we landed on made good use of a range of siding shapes and colors to represent façade variation typically found in neighborhoods."
Even the building blocks of the home, like LP® FlameBlock® Fire-Rated OSB Sheathing, can do more for less. By using it, your design will meet code and exceed expectations when it comes to safety. Trusted building products not only ensure lasting durability; their versatility supports a distinctive look and vision for the home.
Modern home architecture styles do not have to be only budget-driven or design-driven; instead, take both into account and get creative! The proud result, for Rigosu and Woodrow Wilson Townhomes, was an affordable place to live that residents love to call home.