The Los Angeles-based architectural practice Brooks & Scarpa have recently completed this 7914-square-meters affordable apartment building located in the picturesque area of the famous for its mid-century modern architecture Palm Springs, California. Comprising 57, two and three-bedroom family units, Rosa Gardens prides itself with ‘more than a 75% recycling rate’ and many sustainable solutions such as; passive solar design strategies, wide use of recycled materials – insulation is made from recycled newspapers while building’s façade is clad with recycled aluminum cans formed into building blocks – have been employed in the design of this $12.5-million development.
More about the project:
‘Rosa Gardens distinguishes itself from most conventionally developed projects in that it incorporates energy efficient measures that exceed standard practice, optimize building performance, and ensure reduced energy use during all phases of construction and occupancy. The planning and design of the project emerged from close consideration and employment of passive solar design strategies. These strategies include: locating and orienting the building to control solar cooling loads; shaping and orienting the building for exposure to prevailing winds; shaping the building to induce buoyancy for natural ventilation; designing windows to maximize day lighting; shading south facing windows and minimizing west-facing glazing; designing windows to maximize natural ventilation; shaping and planning the interior to enhance daylight and natural air flow distribution.’
‘The building is loaded with energy-saving and environmentally benign or “sustainable” devices. Materials conservation and recycling were employed during construction by requiring all waste to be hauled to a transfer station for recycling. The overall project achieved more than a 75% recycling rate. Specifying carpet with a high-recycled content, insulation made from recycled newspapers, and all-natural linoleum flooring also emphasized resource conservation. The project also uses compact fluorescent lighting throughout the building, insulation made from recycled material and double-pane windows. Each apartment will be equipped with water-saving dual flush toilets and many other energy conserving devices.
‘The building also includes other environmentally friendly materials including a building skin partially clad with recycled aluminum cans formed into building blocks. This required state approval to work with a local recycle center to fabricate and obtain the custom pressed blocks. In addition, the project is designed to incorporate a rooftop hydronic solar panel heating system, which will be implemented in a second phase to minimize the client’s initial costs.’