When the time came to develop the 355-unit, five-story Berkshire Terminus upscale apartment building in the Buckhead section of Atlanta, the design team had one goal: complement the neighboring institutional and corporate office spaces while still offering something distinctive.
“We wanted to be a good neighbor,” says Ben Hudgins, project manager and architect of Lord Aeck Sargent in Atlanta. “We wanted to conform to the design standard set by the existing campus while creating something unique.”
This also required they follow zoning and code requirements already set for the area, such as the amount of glass the building had at the street level. They met the intense street-level fenestration requirement by incorporating a two-story leasing/lobby space and two-story townhome-style walk-up units.
Choice of exterior materials was one way the team successfully differentiated this building from those nearby. The team specified Nichiha VintageWood fiber cement panels for the corners and the most prominent façade of the building to create texture and warmth next to the glass.
“The building is primarily gray and white, so the eye is immediately drawn to the cedar wood color and texture of the VintageWood product. This gives the building an artistic flair that adds life to an almost homogenous contemporary design,” says installer Bryce Dryden, vice president and director of operations for Living Stone Construction in Kennesaw, Ga.
The use of aluminum composite material panels makes direct reference to the existing buildings which are made entirely of glass and metal. Nichiha’s Illumination product was also used on this project as a budget friendly option.
As is the case with most urban infill projects, one of the biggest challenges was keeping roads and walkways open and accessible. In addition, the team needed to be sensitive to the neighboring businesses that still had to operate while the building was under construction.
Along with its aesthetics and streetscape, the property further embraces its location with amenities such as a roof terrace that provides an outdoor space complete with TV, fireplace lounge seating, and Buckhead skyline views.
Dryden’s team also benefitted from the ease of installing Nichiha products on a previous project. Given the additional experience our team gained, this installation was both smooth and efficient, Dryden adds.
The team was happy with the project and how the materials were used. “The Nichiha panels and VintageWood matched the sophisticated look the owner wanted to achieve for this affluent, uptown district,” Dryden says. “The building is a high-profile one, and other building owners and architects from around Atlanta regularly inquire about the design, and more specifically the Nichiha VintageWood panels on it.”
The building had to complement neighboring structures—but still stand on its own. Mixing façade materials was an ideal solution, but required careful thought into transitioning from one look to another.
The use of gray and white colors enhance the warmth of the Nichiha wood-look panels and the building’s contemporary design.
The apartment building features a contemporary high-end design that meshes well with neighboring buildings and the community as a whole. At the same time, its unique approach sets it apart while capturing the attention of other building owners and architects in the Atlanta area.
Architect: Lord Aeck Sargent
Installer: Living Stone Construction
Product: VintageWood & Illumination