Architect: Potter Lawson, Inc.
Owner: Krupp General Contractors
General Contractor: Krupp General Contractors
This is a multi-tenant speculative office building designed to provide competitive market rates along with efficient and flexible office space with a sustainable focus. The project obtained LEED Platinum certification and has attracted 3 tenants that pursued interior LEED certification at the silver and platinum levels. The first floor allows for a potential change to retail space for a deli or café space once the site is fully developed. The architect was responsible for the design of the master plan, the office building and the interior build-outs.
The building sits at the intersection of two main roads, and anchors a master plan with a complimentary mix of uses. The master plan provides new urban infill development on a prime city site that was long underutilized. Derelict buildings and single level metal warehouses were deconstructed to make way for 3 and 4 story structures that increase density while respecting the scale of the adjacent single family neighborhood. The buildings are closely spaced to create defined public street spaces with pedestrian friendly connections.
749 University Row is accessed from the more pedestrian friendly internal roadway. The main entrance aligns with the shared parking garage/apartment building access across the street. A public terrace is located to the east of the main entrance and provides an outdoor space for tenants and residents alike. This space will become further defined by the future adjacent building.
The exterior of the building responds to its location and the owner’s desire to have a building that references desirable loft warehouse building types that include exposed structure, high ceilings, tall windows and a richly colored brick frame exterior accented by terra cotta and gray flat seam metal panels.
The building corner marks the busy intersection with a tall recessed glass volume. University Avenue is a busy road with fast moving traffic and the long façade on this street is broken up with a randomized pattern of solid vertical elements while maintaining a strict four foot planning module. The south façade faces the more pedestrian friendly internal street and a future shared plaza space. Cantilevered over the first floor retail space is a terra cotta plane that creates a south facing terrace for the third floor tenants. While providing depth to the building façade, this element angles out to define the future plaza and reduce the building height at this outdoor public space. An exit stair tower is located at the main entrance and provides a solid vertical mass to offset the rhythm of office windows. Fire rated stair doors are held open at the first floor to encourage occupants to take the stairs instead of the elevators. The interior of the building allows for an industrial aesthetic with tall exposed acoustical steel deck ceilings at 14 feet while abundant daylight penetrates deeply into each space through the tall windows that extend to 11 feet providing a unique interior office environment for potential tenants.
The developer was open to suggestions from the architect to create a unique architectural statement from a building type that can potentially be anonymous due to speculative rental market constraints. The master planned development, building and interior spaces highlights the value of good architectural design in creating not only buildings but engaging places for people. The building was 100% leased within a year further proof that good design is good for business.
Photos: Nels Akerlund Photography