Chrysanthemum Building

Affordable residential urban infill development

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    Project entry 2014 North America – Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, MA, USA

    The project creates an affordable, sustainable new model for residential development in a dense urban infill site. The project includes 4 micro-units and 6 adaptable family lofts. FSC wood framing, shaft and party walls sequester 32 M tons of CO2. The building uses mobile app and social media networks integrated with efficient building systems to create a user culture that supports local sustainable services. Construction cost is USD 2,360/m2 at 50% CD’s, meeting the developer’s ROI goals.

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    Project update April 2018 – Chrysanthemum Building, Boston, USA

    Living space – 2 bedroom apartment.

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    Project update February 2016 - Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, MA, USA

    The building uses sustainable regional forest plywood for built-in storage elements and wall finishes, reducing the need for drywall. Photo: Courtesy Kennedy & Violich Architecture.

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    Project update February 2016 - Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, MA, USA

    The Chrysanthemum Building in Boston’s oldest residential district of North End uses locally-harvested renewable wood that will sequester 32 metric tons of carbon as part of the building’s approach to sustainable design. Photo: Courtesy Kennedy & Violich Architecture.

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    Project update April 2018 – Chrysanthemum Building, Boston, USA

    Living space – 2 bedroom apartment.

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    Project entry 2014 North America – Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, MA, USA

    The project integrates an innovative and adaptable unit design using available light, sun and water with low carbon wood construction framing, shaft and party walls. Efficient building systems support a sustainable ownership culture that extends to green business in the city. Physical and digital building networks are linked by design. NEST app is configured to minimize energy use and maximize energy savings. A smart building app manages resources and promotes local urban food and bike networks.

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    Project entry 2014 North America – Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, MA, USA

    Urban infill: A sustainable model for mixed-use housing in the built- up city.

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    Project update April 2018 – Chrysanthemum Building, Boston, USA

    Studio apartment.

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    Project entry 2014 North America – Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, MA, USA

    Street life: A layered façade.

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    Project entry 2014 North America – Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, MA, USA

    Wrought iron façade: CNC fabrication process.

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    Project entry 2014 North America – Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, MA, USA

    Wood construction.

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    Project entry 2014 North America – Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, MA, USA

    Natural light and ventilation.

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    Project update April 2018 – Chrysanthemum Building, Boston, USA

    Living space – 3 bedroom penthouse.

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    Project entry 2014 North America – Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, MA, USA

    Micro-unit living.

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    Project entry 2014 North America – Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, MA, USA

    Adaptable lofts.

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    Project entry 2014 North America – Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, MA, USA

    Multi-tasking maisonettes.

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    Holcim Awards North America ceremony, Toronto, Canada

    Presenting an Acknowledgement prize for “Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development” (l-r): Filiberto Ruiz, CEO Holcim and Aggregates Industries US; project client Collin Yip, RAFI Properties; Alexander Shelly, Sheila Kennedy and Frano Violich, Kennedy & Violich Architecture, Boston, USA; and jury member Lola Sheppard, Partner, Lateral Office, Toronto, Canada.

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    Holcim Awards North America ceremony, Toronto, Canada

    Winners of all four Acknowledgement prizes (l-r): Alain Bourguignon & Baudoin Nizet, Holcim; Collin Yip, RAFI Properties; Alexander Shelly, Sheila Kennedy & Frano Violich, Kennedy & Violich Architecture; Katherine Faulkner & Nader Tehrani, NADAAA architects; Richard Sommer, University of Toronto; Hadley & Peter Arnold, Arid Lands Institute; Paul Azzopardi, Noé Basch & Etienne Feher, ABF-lab; and Filiberto Ruiz, Holcim.

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    “Sustainability? Using resources found in the city” – Sheila Kennedy

    “Chrysanthemum Building: Affordable residential urban infill development, Boston, USA” by Kennedy & Violich Architecture doesn’t make a separation between natural resources and resources that are found in the city. The project won a Holcim Awards Acknowledgement and promotes sustainability as a ‘common sense’ culture.

  • Awards Acknowledgement prize 2014–2015 North America

The design offers a viable solution to the “housing question” – promoting an affordable model for residential development in a dense urban neighborhood. Completed in 2018, the structure, a wooden construction with a layered metal screen, takes its identity from its immediate surroundings through set-back terraces, the transformation of wrought iron fire escapes into digitally fabricated shading elements, and a commercial space at street level.

By Frano Violich , - Kennedy & Violich Architecture, Boston, MA, USA Sheila Kennedy - Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA, USA and

Ideas: Economic & Social Empowerment , Circular Design

The design offers a viable solution to the “housing question” – promoting an affordable model for residential development in a dense urban neighborhood.

Completed in 2018, the structure, a wooden construction with a layered metal screen, takes its identity from its immediate surroundings through set-back terraces, the transformation of wrought iron fire escapes into digitally fabricated shading elements, and a commercial space at street level.

Chrysanthemum Building

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