Magnolia CourtManteca, CA
Magnolia Court provides 52 units of affordable housing for seniors in the northern San Joaquin Valley. Studio E Architects' design concept was inspired by geodes: a simple exterior concealing an unexpected and vibrant inside. Three colorful interior courts connect north to south with lush contained gardens in the mission tradition. The development's community-facing side, while more tame in color and form, is enlivened by bay windows and front terraces that invite lingering and engagement. A common meeting room is positioned along the street at the entrance to the site; parking is pushed to the rear of the property, where it is convenient to residents, but completely shielded from the sidewalk.
Although made with a standard kit-of-parts for apartment projects, Magnolia Court features design touches not normally associated with such modest construction. The siding, for instance, is placed to create a woven tapestry of a single color: an effect designed to allude to damask fabrics. Inside the courtyards, the typical steel picket railing system is expanded to become a lath wall, capable of supporting vines over time. Also featuring an extensive photovoltaic array across its roof, the project has since been celebrated for its successes in sustainability, and has achieved LEED Platinum certification.
National Award for Best Senior Housing from Multi Housing News
Grand Award for Green/Sustainable Community from Gold Nugget Awards, Pacific Coast Builders Conference