Centre Village is an urban infill project on Balmoral Street in Winnipeg. The site of the 25 unit community is located in a socially challenging neighbourhood in the core of the city. The site faces a busy thoroughfare on the east and backs onto an inner-city school parking lot on the west.
The overall site planning attempts to address the urban context by creating a building edge on Balmoral Street. The remainder of the three–storey built volume is organized behind the front block into a central courtyard with a one-way drive through the site. The street front building block shields the in-between courtyard spaces from the street and acts as a threshold between the public and private zones. These courts act as common extended living rooms for the occupants, or small private yards. All entrances to the units are located inside the block at the ground level off the common courtyards. The ground floor units are either one, two or three storey suites, while the second floor units are always on two levels.
Targeted mainly for recent immigrants, the unit sizes are deliberately small by North American standards and closer to the accepted norm in the rest of the world. By keeping the square footage low and still housing 1-4 bedrooms per unit, the development costs, and thus the rental prices, will remain at an affordable level.
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