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Kelton Apartments, Los Angeles

Client: LIDO Equities

This apartment building in West Los Angeles represents an opportunity to increase housing density at a time when Los Angeles faces an unprecedented housing shortage. 4 dilapidated bungalows on two adjacent lots were replaced with 16 apartments including a very low income affordable unit on an 11,000 sq./ft. lot.

The intent, programmatically, was to provide a mix of unit types that would appeal to a broad range of market needs. One, two and three bedroom units are included with one and three bedrooms making up the majority.

The building’s form was an opportunity to examine the standard developer box. Starting with the maximum building mass, we began to deform and shape the exterior walls in an attempt to express elements of the building’s enclosure. Walls, terraces, elevator and stairs emerge from the overall mass to provide a distinguishable building front and rear while angulation of the buildings side yard walls allow additional day light, ventilation and views for inline units. The front façade, framed by the white plaster walls on either side and clad in corrugated metal “crumples”, as if squeezed, producing multiple orientations that give the building’s street front occupants wider outward visibility. Nestled in a recess and expressed as a primary element, the exterior stair projects outward creating a connection between the street and the landscaped roof garden.