A new 78 unit transit-oriented, mixed-income multifamily community built on a once-vacant MBTA parcel in Jamaica Plain. This five-story contemporary building has two distinct vocabularies. Direct-entries, lap siding, and repetitive sawtooth bays along Hyde Park Avenue provide a human-scale rhythm and materiality sympathetic to the adjacent triple-decker apartment buildings common to the neighborhood. The structure’s massing culminates in a larger, more formal and public scale along Ukraine Way, appropriate for its siting along the southwest corridor commuter rail viaduct.
The lobby fronting on Hyde Park Avenue provides pedestrian access to the residential apartments and associated amenities. A second egress from the first floor opens to a new pocket park that is available to the public. With more than 1,600 square feet of ground-floor retail and 2,500 square feet of community space, amenities for tenants include a fitness room, a common lounge, bicycle storage, top floor deck, outdoor play area, and a dog walk. The 84,658 square foot community provides 38 workforce housing units and 40 affordable units for households earning at or below 60% of area median income. Eight of these affordable units are set-aside for formerly homeless families who earn at or below 30% area median income.
Lively and inviting interior spaces are informed and inspired by proximate landmarks. The hexagonal shape is a unifying design element, complemented by the custom tile pattern in the lobby, which artfully interprets the topography of Harvard University’s Arnold Arboretum. A palette of gold, teal, and chartreuse combine with black metal accents, colorful artwork, warm toned wood, and touches of gray to provide a fresh, bold interior environment.
Acting as a buffer between the rail lines and the surrounding context, A.O. Flats at Forest Hills employs environmentally friendly features throughout and is LEED-Homes Platinum Certifiable. Part of a larger master planned development, this third phase was designed in collaboration with Associate Architect, Stephen Chung.