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Crystal View

Location: Illinois

Type: New Construction
Use: Mixed Income Residential Rental
Cost: $15 million
Status: Completed 2010.


This appealing 70-unit rental development brings forward-thinking, eco-friendly design and construction to what was once a run-down public housing site in Urbana, Illinois. Crystal View offers an arresting mixture of new two-flats, townhouses and single family homes as mixed-income rental units, with the majority set aside for low and very low income families. The development confronted a number of structural challenges, including its location near a floodplain. Besides raising the site, we created a central traffic circle which acts as a bioswale to direct rainwater runoff to a nearby creek. Native plantings and rain gardens absorb water from the buildings’ downspouts, and geothermal HVAC and solar panels control energy costs and support sustainability.