The Sunset Stretch

Stretching the Sunset District's revival-style homes into dense, flexible, and sustainable multi-unit housing that meets the modern housing needs of San Francisco

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The Sunset Stretch brings some much-needed elasticity to the housing stock of San Francisco’s Sunset District by stretching the scale and character of the area’s 1920s-era Period Revival homes into a new typology of multi-unit housing that brings density, flexibility, and sustainability to the neighborhood without disrupting its low-rise charm.

It's a framework that adds considerable density within the same footprint of a typical single-family home in the Sunset District with its central courtyard, efficient unit layouts, and alternative housing arrangements like co-housing, where large common spaces allow for smaller individual units. The Sunset Stretch has a simple overall massing, but adds projecting balconies to its front and back facades that playfully reference the colorful and expressive Period Revival homes of the Sunset District. This approach keeps construction complexity and cost down while still making each Sunset Stretch unique and responsive to its context. 

The Sunset Stretch design is modular and highly flexible, with living units that range in size from one to four bedrooms and can be arranged in any combination in order to meet the needs of a diverse range of individuals and multi-generational families. This flexibility is conducive to co-living arrangements and shared ownership models like Community Land Trusts (CLTs), which advance racial and economic equity by shifting ownership, power, and resources to local communities and people of color.

Location
San Francisco, CA

Categories

Architecture, Landscape, Planning

Year

2023

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Stretching Sunset's Density

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Stretching Sunset’s Character

In the 1920s, builders such as the Rousseau Brothers and Henry Doelger began to develop the once empty “outside lands” into the Sunset District we know today. They constructed rows of mass-produced homes in a variety of Period Revival architectural styles, including Spanish Colonial, Tudor, French Provincial, and Mediterranean.

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Stretching Sunset's Street Section

The massing of the Sunset Stretch is based on the dimensions of a typical Sunset home so it seamlessly fits into existing blocks. Its front and back facades are embellished with projecting balconies that playfully reference the revival styles of The Sunset and can be customized on each building. This approach makes each building unique and expressive while keeping construction complexity and cost down.

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Co-Living Unit Plans

The Sunset Stretch is stretchiest when its units are designed for a co-living configuration, where large kitchen, dining, and living spaces are shared by all residents. In turn, individual units are smaller and don’t have full-sized kitchens. Units range in size from one to four bedrooms and can be arranged in any combination due to their modular design, meeting the needs of a diverse range of individuals and multi-generational families.

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Bathroom and Kitchen Pods

All Sunset Stretch units feature a combination of three types of kitchen and bathroom modules shown below. These modules are always located in the same zone, so that they stack vertically and create a continuous utility stack that can be easily accessed for maintenance and upgrades.

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Co-Living Building Plans

The configuration shown below prioritizes shared indoor and outdoor spaces, but the front yard and a portion of the ground floor could also be utilized for parking or other building amenities. The central stair core configuration can include an elevator and be either enclosed or semi-enclosed.

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In a co-living arrangement, the ground floor features a large kitchen, dining, and living spaces that are shared by all residents.

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Dining niches double as co-working space for residents of the building.

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An inner courtyard provides additional common space and brings added daylight and cross ventilation to every unit, allowing for additional density.

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Unit interiors feature exposed cross-laminated timber (CLT) panels, a natural and beautiful finish that showcases the building's mass timber construction.

©2024 Vonn Weisenberger