With prominent multifamily and senior living projects across the East Coast, national architecture and interiors firm The Architectural Team opened, began construction or received approvals on more than 1,000 units of mixed-income housing in the first six months of 2023 alone.
Highlights include June’s grand opening of The Apartments at Moran Square, a 44-unit Passive House community combining new construction with adaptive reuse in Fitchburg, Massachusetts; and openings earlier this year for Boston’s The Loop at Mattapan Station, a 135-unit mixed-use, transit-oriented Passive House development, as well as The Cordwainer, a pioneering memory care community using biophilic design to improve resident health and well-being.
These and other innovative developments offer valuable case studies on today’s most impactful planning and design solutions that address housing shortages and improve livability and wellness for diverse populations in a range of urban and suburban settings. Details on several of TAT’s new multifamily and senior projects follow below.
These works also add to the nearly 200,000 units of housing created over the past 50-plus years by TAT, one of the country’s most experienced planners and designers of multifamily buildings and communities.
New Passive House Developments are Shaping Greener, More Affordable Cities
The Loop at Mattapan Station in Boston
Designed by TAT and MASS Design Group for developers Preservation of Affordable Housing and Nuestra Comunidad Development Corporation, this just-opened project has transformed a parking lot next to a subway station into a mixed-use Passive House development with 135 units of housing, retail and community space — providing critically needed multifamily options in the Mattapan community. Notably, the building’s rooftop solar array is connected to on-site battery storage for emergency backup power. At the recent opening, Boston Mayor Michelle Wu described the project as “a model for the mission-driven work of creating affordable housing for working families and building stronger Boston neighborhoods.”
The Apartments at Moran Square in Fitchburg, Massachusetts
Combining new construction with the adaptive reuse of two adjacent historic properties, this project adds 44 affordable and workforce housing units in downtown Fitchburg. Designed to Passive House standards by TAT for developers Rees-Larkin Development LLC and MassHousing, Moran Square is a case study of the emerging adaptive reuse Passive House trend. It also exemplifies the financial, zoning density and embodied carbon benefits of integrating existing structures into new development initiatives.
Biophilic Design Solutions Supporting Better Memory Care
The Cordwainer in Norwell, Massachusetts
Just opened in early 2023, this 55-unit community for Anthemion Senior Lifestyles re-envisions the memory care model by using biophilic design to enhance care and offer positive therapeutic impacts. TAT’s design maximizes natural light penetration throughout the building through light wells in the unique multi-story indoor memory garden and with clerestory windows in common areas — helping to mitigate some of the sundowning agitation that many dementia patients experience. The use of plant life and natural materials, including living moss walls, indoor and outdoor gardens, and wood finishes, also creates an environment that is stimulating and healthy.
New Initiatives Preserve — and Improve — Affordable Housing
Flat 9 at Whittier in Roxbury, Massachusetts
TAT’s master plan and architectural design for the ongoing, phased redevelopment of a 1950s-era public housing community aims to create a new transit-oriented campus with 320 mixed-income units, commercial space and a variety of resident amenities. The second 52-unit phase officially opened with a ribbon-cutting celebration in April that also marked a ground-breaking for the 172-unit third phase. By adding more than 100 additional apartments relative to the original complex, the fully electrified project demonstrates how creative, affordable housing redevelopments can play a significant role in addressing ongoing housing shortages.
New Housing that Helps Cities and Towns Boost Density
Avalon Harbor Isle in Hempstead, New York
In this rapidly growing Long Island suburb, TAT designed a new community offering 172 units across 14 contextual buildings of varying configurations and layouts. Set on a large-scale sloping waterfront site, the project officially opened in mid-June and is an important step towards adding much-needed multifamily housing in the smaller towns and cities surrounding New York City.
St. Therese in Everett, Massachusetts
Located on the former site of St. Therese Parish in a prominent setting near transit, this new mixed-use community for residents aged 62-plus provides 77 affordable rental units and six for-sale townhomes with on-site support services for seniors. Designed by TAT to integrate harmoniously with the surrounding neighborhood, the development also includes an on-site pocket park as well as a ground floor health center for residents and members of the broader community. The clinic, operated by East Boston Neighborhood Health Center through its Neighborhood PACE program, is the result of a successful public/private partnership to meet the interrelated affordable housing and health care needs for the City of Everett.