A retro auto shop is transformed into a modern, open office that nods to the past while looking to the future.
990 East Seventeenth is the re-adaptation of an existing repair shop building into 4,292 square feet of modern professional office building. Taking advantage of the efficient and open structure, a unique office space is created to serve design-oriented users.
The 1978 original building was stripped down to it’s steel frame. In place of the existing standard metal building panel, a new skin of lightweight aluminum panels form a rain screen over a heavily insulated wall system. A bright white roof with high R-value encloses the building with south facing shaded monitor skylights at each of the four bays. Each of the original 10’x10’ Roll-up doors along the north façade are replaced with clear glass to provide views to the landscaped courtyard and mountains beyond. Additional apertures are inserted along the East and West of the building to expose hints of structure and activity inside. Along the South facade, a thin strip window runs high along the length of the building to maximize the natural lighting possibilities within the interior, while minimizing the impact of the sun.
Inside, an undulating wood slat ceiling – think violin – creates an organic flowing space providing spatial interest and acoustic relief. A shared restroom core at the center of the building frees up interior space for each tenant to create a plan to suit their needs. Outside, lush desert landscaping and re-purposed concrete hardscape enliven the outdoor spaces throughout the site to create a virtual oasis with shade and plant color.
The building celebrates sustainability. Underground rainwater harvesting tanks provide water for landscaping as well as the 6 large community garden beds. Passive solar techniques keep the building comfortable throughout the year and solar panels provide the extra electricity needed on site.
The building plays off its neighbors including other award winning projects by Rob Paulus Architects: to the north, the re-adaptation of the Ice House and Cold Storage Building into the successful Ice House Lofts, and to the east the popular Barrio Metalico residential development. This third project completes the block with complementary design and a common sensitivity to smart urban development. Rob Paulus Architects as well as R+R Develop are housed in the building.