St. Joseph’s Senior Apartments – 2013 Global Awards for Excellence Finalist

StJosephs Oakland - Right Rail

About St. Joseph’s Senior Apartments

Location: Oakland, California
Developer: BRIDGE Housing Corporation
Designer: Van Meter Williams Pollack
Size: 69,260 square feet

BRIDGE Housing creatively leveraged an underused historic landmark in Oakland to develop St. Joseph’s Senior Apartments, an 84-unit affordable housing development for low-income seniors with 3,200 square feet of commercial space intended for tenants that will support the community.

The rehab and adaptive use involved demolition; asbestos and lead paint abatement; seismic upgrades; historic brick, plaster, window, and slate roof restoration; all new mechanical systems; reintroduction of the grand staircase; preservation of heritage palm trees; and compliance with the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation of Historic Properties.

On-site amenities include a spacious community room opening onto a garden and sunny lobby areas with seating. The lobby hallway features a brilliantly colored mural painted by the Eastside Arts Alliance, a neighborhood arts and cultural organization. Each apartment is unique and incorporates historic wood windows, sunporches, ornate plaster moldings, and 13-foot-high ceilings.

Redevelopment of the historic St. Joseph’s property in two phases effectively addresses urban neighborhood revitalization by reusing an underused infill site, increasing density, replacing obsolete infrastructure, and mitigating physical blight. The property is located at the edge of a predominantly commercial/industrial-zoned area bounded by medium-density housing. Restoring the site to residential use has helped alleviate land use conflicts between the residential and industrial edges in this area and continues the trend of converting more underused and vacant infill sites to high-density residential uses. Creating a vibrant residential community at St. Joseph’s will help create a safer environment with adequate lighting and enhanced activity at the street level after business hours. New housing units will add to the existing housing developments in the neighborhood and improve the residential quality of the area.

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