The Extraordinary Transformation of Parkside Terrace to
The Overlook at Oxon Run
Project Description: Total renovation of a twelve-story residential highrise apartment building in the Ward 8 section of the District of Columbia. The 316,181 sq. ft. building houses a total of 181 one-bedroom and 135 two-bedroom apartment units, and is split into two distinct uses. Floors one through seven provide 149 units for senior living, and floors eight through twelve are dedicated to working professionals and family units.
The Overlook, formerly known as Parkside Terrace, was once a failed affordable family housing project and a source of blight in the community. Ridden with crime, drugs, and poverty, this twelve-story highrise building made headlines for the increasing levels of violence and deterioration that continued to worsen over time. The property was abandoned in 2005 and sat vacant for several years, creating an eyesore that grew worse by the day due to decay, neglect, and vandalism. Existing conditions were so deteriorated that a gut demolition was the only possibility for revitalization of the building.
The development team realized that creative design strategies would be needed to transform this project into a living, thriving apartment building that would promote community and eliminate poverty and destitution. The developer, Community Preservation Development Corporation (CPDC), decided to design the building to accommodate both working professionals and seniors. Design elements such as separate lobbies and elevators for the families and seniors, access control, and variations in finishes were introduced to create a unique design responding to the split program. Unit layouts were configured appropriately based on the needs of the different populations. Existing balconies, which often become visible storage units in many multifamily housing developments, were enclosed to create more desirable interior space.
All apartment units are completely new, and the reconfiguration of the building to incorporate balcony space into the livable footprint resulted in an increase in the unit count and net living space. The redesigned building features new lobbies, lounges, a community room, a learning center, a fitness room, and medical suite for the residents. A new branch bank and retail space for a beauty salon, sundries shop, and other uses provide many services targeted to meet the needs of the residents.