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USA & Canada

Warming Up Mixed-Use Architecture – John R Project

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Location: Detroit, MI

Architect: Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects [LOHA]

Photography: Jason Keen

Located in the historic district of Detroit’s Brush Park, John R 2660 is part of a revitalization project called City Modern. In total, LOHA designed four anchor buildings. Interestingly, each structure has its own unique exterior. To be sure, John R is a great solution that stands out.

Notably, the stunning mixed-use structure is wrapped in Western Red Cedar. As well, the building boasts floor to-ceiling windows. Thus, bringing texture and openness to every floor.

Nature’s Most Versatile Material on Mixed-Use Architecture

Moreover, the decision to use nature’s most versatile material was twofold. For starters, it’s naturally resistant to rot, decay and insects. Hence, cedar is an ideal siding product for Michigan’s harsh winter season.

“Cedar is a good choice for cold environments,” explains LOHA’s principal-in-Charge: Lorcan O’Herlihy. “Because it has a high R value – meaning that air infiltration is very limited – it requires less mechanical conditioning. So, it’s a good choice for a sustainable envelope.”

Warming Up Forward-Thinking Design

Secondly, cedar has timeless appeal. This was important because the clients didn’t just want to bring some much-needed housing and amenities to the neighborhood. They also wanted the development to serve as a bridge between downtown and midtown.

Mission accomplished. Indeed, the beautiful texturized knotty cedar complements the structure’s clean contemporary lines. But, it also honors the area’s heritage.

“John R 2660 has become a key example for how new development can both reflect the vast history and anticipate a future for the neighborhood,” says the award-winning architect.

 WRC Specifications

Grade:  KD Select Knotty

Pattern: T&G ¼”reveal

Size:  1 X 4”

Fasteners:  Stainless steel

Finish:  Semi-transparent, solvent born, oil-based stain