Halvorson Design Partnership
The Fuse Condominium project in Cambridge, Massachusetts set out to create an outdoor living room or public back yard for the residential community. ‘Residents in urban settings strive to find a balance between the excitement of the city, the vast social opportunities while trying to carve out a little serenity and relationship to nature, seasons, etc.’ said Robert Adams of Halvorson Design Partnership.
The courtyards and open spaces in this residential community provide many of the desired qualities of life: sunshine, nature, social spaces, etc. There are two roof amenity spaces on this project designed to provide a variety of different scaled spaces to appeal to a variety of users and uses. One has pool, lounging, dining area and conversational zones created with pergola-type structures and furniture groupings. This space used a 24”x24” concrete slab and wood deck tiles on pedestals to create a harmonious and beautiful design. The second space has a large green area with medium-size patios and dining rooms for mid-sized groups with grills, tables, chairs and side tables with intimate spaces tucked into the edges of the large central lawn. Using the same traditional permeable pavers that are used on the ground level, the designer was able to continue the hip and energizing paver design in this amenity space over a permeable base. Both spaces borrowed from the surrounding Alewife Reservation utilizing a glass railing to make the edge as porous as possible and using the same plant types found in the borrowed landscape to tie them together.
Robert points out that ‘Creating open space that provides social interaction at a variety of scales and activities, open space that connects to the context/larger natural environment, and open spaces that somehow enhance the seasons/natural systems’ was essential on this project.