Union pushed the boundaries of regulatory constraints to create a unique, small-scale development in the dense, diverse, and thriving Olneyville neighborhood of Providence. The developer of the property had a tall order: create four affordable, homeownership, mixed-use townhomes – each with a rental apartment – on two vacant city lots.
Inspired by the traditional urban fabric where buildings share a common lot line and with careful review and understanding of the local zoning and planning regulations, the project was developed as of right; no waivers or variances were required. By merging and subdividing the two lots into four separate lots and taking advantage of an allowed zero-side yard setback on adjacent property lines, one structure with two townhomes straddles a property line. A firewall at the property line creates two ‘buildings’ where each side is on its own fee-simple lot.