Elm Avenue condo complex
9 unit sustainability
design objective 1
Maximizing allowable area within the required building envelope and creating an unique multilevel living experience with effectively using the shaded rooftop terrace as a living room extension and cooling shadow box, promoting sustainability and natural ventilation in the warm California climate.

  • type9 unit townhouse complex on 3 levels and underground garage
  • year | size2012 | 13,100 sf
  • locationGlendale, California
  • statuscompleted 2019

project statement
As all PAAstudio projects, this again is an environmentally friendly one.

Technically a remodel, we were faced with an empty garage slab and 9 units to accommodate. The solution came with a warm tonality and environmentally friendly materials, along with the introduction of the rooftop habitable garden space and the above trellis. These sustainable feature creates a permanent ventable cushion at the top of building with the potential of cutting the energy balance in half. The addition of operable skylights on top of the stairwells is another passive solar feature, allowing the hot air to escape naturally drawn at the highest openable portion of the dwelling. The air conditioning units are relocated to the top of the staircases as well, being well out of sight with a noise-shield apron around.


project statement (cont)

This layout creates an ample dual interaction patio scheme, allowing occupants to freely choose habitable exterior portions of the surroundings. South facing windows have built-in shading overhangs and the landscaping flows easily from the ground floor to the rooftop gardens.
The new design of the Elm Avenue Condo Complex was already praised by the City of Glendale Planning and Building and Safety Departments. It is the direction the City would like to explore and it is the design approach which will create a much friendlier environment along with a sustainable habitat. Not to leave out the much improved property value - a sheer gain for owner, occupants and the whole neighborhood.

design objective 2
Balancing out aesthetics, finction and budget
Unlike some of the boxy multi-family developments in the immediate neighborhood, the project's street facade incorporates thoughtful, creative treatments throughout. And while the modern architectural language is unique in the immediate neighborhood, the scale and use of materials presents a design that complements this architecturally eclectic neighborhood... A remarkable feature of this project are the roof decks. These areas include generous private open space designed with trellis structures that themselves become a key design feature.
City of Glendale DRB approval report