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The building’s 160 units (arranged at a ratio of 90 units per acre) are articulated around a central courtyard in an ascending counterclockwise spiral. A low profile defines the southern perimeter, and the height increases as the building completes the circle along the northern edge. At each corner, circulation breezeways imperceptibly separate the building masses, while a network of open-air corridors connects all units. This strategy achieves multiple goals. It helps direct beneficial summer breezes throughout the complex, ultimately pulling them into the central courtyard garden. It also blocks the nippy winter gusts — a result of positioning the taller three-story structure to the north. And finally, it creates a pleasant destination at the heart of the project for all residents to enjoy throughout the year. On-site water retention was achieved by an underground crate system, which, coupled with an extensive amount of pervious ground surfaces, captures storm-water runoff. provides each resident with an efficient open living space. All apartments have a private bath, microwave, and small refrigerator — but no open-fire kitchen. Each unit has been specifically designed and furnished with the goal of reducing maintenance and operations costs. The simple decision of minimizing the use of easily breakable “moving parts,” such as cabinet doors, will pay off in the long run. Light/motion sensors and individually controlled HVAC units contribute to overall energy savings. Additional strategies that ultimately helped 4415 Perry Street achieve LEED Platinum certification include drought-tolerant native landscaping, water-conserving fixtures, energy-efficient appliances, high-recycled-content materials, and high-performance building envelope insulation. The exterior shading system is indicative of the architect’s ingenuity; Glitsch clearly understands Houston’s climate. To minimize heat gain and New Hope Housing

Fiberglass grating — typically used as a walking surface in industrial applications — was cut and installed as light filters outside each sun-vulnerable window. maximize cooling in the building, her team made the decision to protect all windows (except the north-facing ones) with external shading devices. The material of choice needed to be a standard and affordable off-the-shelf product that would block the sun’s rays before they hit the glass and at the same time maintain a high level of daylight penetration to curtail the use of artificial lighting. After much research, fiberglass grating — typically used as a walking surface in industrial applications — was cut and installed as light filters outside each sun-vulnerable window. The simplicity of its design and the straightforward bolted installation integrates seamlessly into the composition of the facade. The purposeful use of a simple palette of materials such as fiber cement boards, stucco, and brick on the exterior elevations seems to echo the scale of the residential units’ layout and program functions throughout the project. To support the needs of the residents and the mission of the organization, a series of community functions were incorporated on the ground floor beyond the 24/7-staffed reception area. These essential amenities include community rooms, a shared kitchen, a business center, washer/dryer facilities, and the central courtyard with its water feature, covered patios, outdoor seating, and barbecue grill. These are areas where residents gather regularly to take advantage of life-skills training and focused events, ranging from the Healthcare for the Homeless Fair to Thanksgiving dinner. These on-site

5/6 2013

Texas Architect 27

Texas Architect May/June 2013: Preservation  

This issue on historic preservation illustrates themany facets of the field, including restoration,rehabilitation, and adaptive reuse.

Texas Architect May/June 2013: Preservation  

This issue on historic preservation illustrates themany facets of the field, including restoration,rehabilitation, and adaptive reuse.