After the circuitous odyssey that was 'construction,' we are very proud to unveil the finished photos of what we call Tri-Tip Lofts (read previous blog posts about this project with the "Downtown Lofts" tag).
The project began as one of the very first commissions for 9.SQUARE--kicking off only a few months after we opened up shop in August 2012. At that time, the new owners desired to transform this overlooked warehouse building into several downtown lofts. Little did we know then that almost three years later this project would fit perfectly within our portfolio of adaptive reuse projects.
The 3,000 SF floor plan previously was used for storage and had a heavy timber superstructure with a single stairway. We started by trying to plan out three apartment units on the floor. One of the units would be the signature main unit and the other two would be smaller efficiency units. Of the various conceptual designs we explored, the two options below were the finalists.
Ultimately the selected option focused its energy around the east end of the building (Broadway). There were several reasons for this, but chief among them was the naturally well lit, lofty environment at that end of the building. Typical of buildings from that time, the roof structure gently sloped from the west to the east so that the ceiling height topped out at nearly 16' along the Broadway exterior wall. The design attempted to amplify this change in ceiling elevation by tucking all of the smaller private spaces along the west end of the main unit so that by the east end it was completely open and public. Another aspect of the plan was that, for practical considerations, the central "core" of the unit was filled with all of the services (laundry room, utility room, bathrooms, and kitchen plumbing). A "lid" was put over the top of this extremely efficient service core to let the ceiling plane run uninterrupted across the building. The resultant optical illusion makes the ceiling seem even taller.
After that the project was put on hold for a number of months before finally changing hands to new ownership. The new owner liked the vision for the lofts, but desired to have a larger main unit and thus combined the other two units into one 2-bedroom unit. A private stairway was also added for the main unit along with minor plan tweaks to arrive at the layout below for the entire 2nd Floor.
The final space is dramatic and dynamic. It is difficult to photograph so we have enlisted Knowble Media to prepare a video tour of the space as well. But photographer Ken McCasland of Southeast Minnesota Technology did an outstanding job of photographing the finished product. Downtown Rochester officially has two more housing units!