Urban Architecture-Award of Merit
Project Designers: Battle Lake Design Group, Inc.
Structural Engineer: Acius Engineering
Project owner: The Warehouse Loft Company Ltd.
Location: 8803 95 St NW
The Mill Creek Flex Homes' project purpose was to develop sustainable residential infill within the inner city. This three-unit, 2-storey row housing fits into the City of Edmonton's vision of higher urban density in the "core," while complementing the existing neighbourhood's built form. The development’s location and proximity to local amenities increases the desirability and livability of the project.
The building design creates open, functional public and private interior spaces on a small footprint. It is designed and constructed to showcase a contemporary, modern straw bale building in an urban setting. Collaborative design solutions using straw bale technology were developed for the challenges of the Alberta climate.
Cement-lime stucco and vertical cedar siding create a contemporary exterior that embraces traditional building materials and techniques. Organic, textured straw bale walls, exposed structural wood and concrete, as well as extensive window use, form the basis of a design that includes simple yet functional finishes and emphasizes locally-produced materials.
The project incorporates many "green" technologies and ideas, including passive and active solar systems, roof-top patios, and green roofs. Zero and low volatile organic compound (VOC) finishes, and a breathable exterior envelope, contribute to a healthier interior environment.
Mill Creek Flex Homes provides pleasing, meaningful and sustainable alternatives to single-family homes while enhancing the existing character of Edmonton's mature neighbourhoods.
- Very sensitive architecture and the most sustainable project submitted.
- A good example of sensitive infill in Edmonton’s mature neighbourhoods.
- The project could have been even better had the applicant challenged the existing zoning and sited the building envelope closer to the public streets. Moving the buildings forward would create an active urban edge.
- We always encourage green roofs and are happy to see them included in this project.
- Notwithstanding that this project didn’t meet the eligibility criteria of being designed by an architect, it is worthy of recognition in the "urban architecture" category. The project provides an alarming signal to architects.