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Loft Apartment in Charlottesville

Sep 1, 2020

Loft Apartment Charlottesville

Design: Bushman Dreyfus Architects

Location: Charlottesville, Virginia, USA

Downtown Loft, Virginia

Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia

The oldest building on the downtown pedestrian mall in Charlottesville, Virginia, USA, contains this minimal and modern renovation. The c.1843 three-story structure was badly in need of refurbishment — portions of the framing, roof, insulation, windows, mechanical systems, electrical and plumbing were all replaced and renewed so this building is set for service for another century or more.

Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia

What was dark commercial space with claustrophobic offices and an enclosed storage attic is now transformed into a single spacious open floor apartment with a sleeping loft. Transparency from front to back is a key design intent, establishing visual access to the street trees in front and sunlight in the back. Multiple modes of direct and indirect natural lighting animate the space.

Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia

A single scaled up cabinet “box” with hidden hardware, secret doors and rooms runs the length of the interior and conceals the kitchen, bathroom, services and storage. All kitchen appliances disappear when not in use. Doors to the left and right of the work surface open fully for access to a wall oven and refrigerator. The wood cladding is rough sawn white oak with a light stain. The floor planks are also white oak, keeping the color and material palette to a minimum.

Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia

A window-like opening through the oak cabinet volume frames a view of the original brick masonry bearing walls offering a dramatic counterpoint of texture and color. The backsplash is completely open to a stair leading to the apartment vestibule below. In the kitchen’s opening, a low-profile stainless steel utility trough with electrical outlets runs along the edge of the counter. Functional and durable stainless-steel accessories for the kitchen and bath are custom-fabricated locally.

Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia

The sleeping loft stair is both foreground and background, heavy and light, transparent and opaque. The white guardrail is a single 3/8” thick painted steel plate. The treads and risers are folded perforated steel, fixed to the vertical steel plate guard, creating a delicate, but monolithic, integrated structure.

Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia

Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia

Seven new skylights in the high ceiling fill the space with natural light. New double pane aluminum-clad windows maximize the daylight openings and ensure better energy performance. New insulation under the existing roof provides thermal insulation far in excess of the code required value.

Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia

Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia

Loft Apartment, Charlottesville – Building Information

Design: Bushman Dreyfus Architects

Location: Charlottesville, Virginia, USA
Year built: 2019
Floor Area: 1350 sq ft (125 sqm)
Design team: Jeff Bushman, Aga Saulle
Structural engineer: Dunbar Milby Williams Pittman & Vaughan
General contractor: Longview Management & Construction Co.

Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia

The project received the following awards:
2019 Virginia AIA Merit Award for Excellence in Interior Design
2020 Architizer A+ Awards Jury Winner & Popular Choice Winner in the Apartment category

About Bushman Dreyfus Architects
BDA believes that architecture is distinguished from the other arts by the dialog between client and designer. Every BDA project is a response to a singular location, a particular climate, and the intentions of a unique client.
Based in Virginia, BDA works with clients across the USA and internationally, from California to New York, to London, to Kenya. Practice areas include new construction, historic renovation, building additions and remodels.

Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia Loft Apartment Charlottesville Virginia

Photography: Virginia Hamrick Photography

Loft Apartment in Charlottesville, Virginia images / information received 010920

Location: Charlottesville, Virginia, USA

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Website: Charlottesville, Virginia