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Old January 4th, 2013, 09:11 PM   #1
Suburbanist
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Your preferred ground-floor and lot positioning (for residential tall buildings)

What is your preferred arrangement for the ground floor and position (within the lot) of a residential skyscraper?
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Old January 4th, 2013, 09:18 PM   #2
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My preference is this (admittedly not easy to build everywhere)

- building footprint offset from the curbside and adjoining buildings at least 10 meters (e.g., no windows projecting over the plot boundary, let alone advancing over the curbside)

- plenty of vegetation isolating the building entrance from the street level, with some S or L shaped internal sidewalk that hides makes people look like they are disappearing from the street view before they reach the building's access door

- withing the footprint, I'd leave some place dubbing as a covered rendezvous with chairs, maybe a small water fountain, or a lounge partially opened to the vegetation, with an overall open plan approach that leaves the transition between the "vegetation belt" and the ground floor fluid and undefined except by lack of tons of steel and concrete covering it :p

- if possible, facilities such as gym would be located on 1st floor, but leave a mezzanine that creates a grand lobby near the elevators.

- no ground surface parking lot (either underground or occupying first floors)

- no commercial activities, no office use of ground floor (leave that for commercial tall buildings)

The whole idea is to create an impression you are exiting the noise and chaos from the street and entering an oasis of tranquility, calmness, a place that is completely different from what you left behind. But I realize these are expensive ideas, since they require spacious lots to provide the desired offsets. I really like those skyscrapers that don't share any walls with others and don't have just a small residential entrance squeezed between 1 or 2 or more storefronts using ground floor for non-residential purposes.
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Old January 4th, 2013, 11:33 PM   #3
Eric Offereins
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Directly at the street,
entrance to underground parking area perferably around the corner,
bars or restaurants at street level,
floors above: facilities lika a pool or gym,
apartments there above.
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Old January 5th, 2013, 01:22 AM   #4
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Bars are very prone to produce noise, which you can escape with noise insulation; but also obnoxious behavior (drunk revelers) and littering, which greatly affects your experience when arriving on foot to the building. Of course that depends on the type of liquor-licensed establishment that is opening there, but still always a risk of wasted teens trashing the curbside and clustering around the entrance.

I don't think it is great to have a bar or club right below residences. Maybe couple hundred meters away is fine.

Restaurants without loud/live music on the other hand don't bother residents. There is the issue of smell if the kitchen vents aren't properly positioned, but that is a minor issue.
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Old January 5th, 2013, 12:15 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
My preference is this (admittedly not easy to build everywhere)

- building footprint offset from the curbside and adjoining buildings at least 10 meters (e.g., no windows projecting over the plot boundary, let alone advancing over the curbside)

- plenty of vegetation isolating the building entrance from the street level, with some S or L shaped internal sidewalk that hides makes people look like they are disappearing from the street view before they reach the building's access door

- withing the footprint, I'd leave some place dubbing as a covered rendezvous with chairs, maybe a small water fountain, or a lounge partially opened to the vegetation, with an overall open plan approach that leaves the transition between the "vegetation belt" and the ground floor fluid and undefined except by lack of tons of steel and concrete covering it :p

- if possible, facilities such as gym would be located on 1st floor, but leave a mezzanine that creates a grand lobby near the elevators.

- no ground surface parking lot (either underground or occupying first floors)

- no commercial activities, no office use of ground floor (leave that for commercial tall buildings)

The whole idea is to create an impression you are exiting the noise and chaos from the street and entering an oasis of tranquility, calmness, a place that is completely different from what you left behind. But I realize these are expensive ideas, since they require spacious lots to provide the desired offsets. I really like those skyscrapers that don't share any walls with others and don't have just a small residential entrance squeezed between 1 or 2 or more storefronts using ground floor for non-residential purposes.
Your idea is good, but rarely fisible in ann urban (city) enviroment
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Old January 5th, 2013, 01:15 PM   #6
Eric Offereins
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I agree and they are undesirable because gated communities like this one below in Milan (there are many over there) are terrible for street life.

https://maps.google.nl/maps?q=viale+...2.21,,0,-20.41
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Old January 5th, 2013, 11:43 PM   #7
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That is not exactly a gated community I think (i was living there before moving to Tilburg some years ago), but, ugly building aside, that is the idea: a building that is sufficiently receded from street, almost hidden (ground floor) for the random passerby.

But I'd have vegetation taller, creating a "mini-forest" with just the alley for pedestrian access and the roadway to the underground garage.
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Old January 6th, 2013, 12:46 AM   #8
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I've been in that area a couple of times because a customer had a plant nearby.

I was told this was a very unsafe neighborhoud at night. Many buildigns had large fences and locked doors.
It may make your apartment safer, but it won't make the street safer or better.
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Old January 6th, 2013, 01:39 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric Offereins View Post
I was told this was a very unsafe neighborhoud at night. Many buildigns had large fences and locked doors.
That area is a bit unsafe at night because of a problematic population that lives nearby in areas that are in decay and were taken over a combination of unemployed/rowdy/unintegrated youths. It has nothing to do with the design of buildings. Not far from that place there are some hideous tenements where they put 10-15 people in bunk beds on apartments that fits 5 or 6 max (illegal immigrants mostly).
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Old January 8th, 2013, 01:07 AM   #10
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That doesn't help either. However I still like Milan. Great city.
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