As part of a charrette for the northwest side of Milwaukee, we were tasked to develop an expansive/underutilized retail property into a new industrial park, providing jobs for the Granville community. From the onset we envisioned the property as much more than just a job creation tool. We saw an opportunity for a “campus”; a “campus” creating a new image for Granville, an image that is focused on environmental awareness, pedestrian integration, and support for entrepreneurship.
Big picture, we incorporated a substantial “green belt” across the length of the site, creating pedestrian linkages, promoting walk-ability within and throughout the campus. The “green belt”, with detention and retention pond features, dramatically reduces storm water runoff, limiting harmful impacts on the natural environment. The “green belt” is left open to Brown Deer Road along the building frontages to reinforce the sense of community ownership. Beyond the scope of our initial project parameters we proposed a Phase II commercial mixed use component along the north side of the site. Phase II increases efficiency of the site, defining a recognizable identity and offers incubator space for new businesses.
The contemporary architecture of the buildings themselves was meant to drive home the image of Granville as an innovative, forward-looking community. The building’s footprints and shells are designed as straightforward metal buildings for efficiency and economy. The gestural variation in scale and roof pitch creates a sense of movement. The glass features denote entry and encourage visibility into gallery spaces.
The Continuum team on this project is Daniel Ayala, Conlynn Goetsch, Courtney Ragon and Maggie Kuhn Jacobus. The principal-in-charge is Falamak Nourzad.
The charrette has garnered a great deal of public, community, neighborhood, development and media interest. Read one article here.