The Rose Walk transformed the gateway to the Rose Bowl, one of Pasedena's most well-known attractions, from an eyesore to an attraction of its own.
|To break up the look and feel of Rose Walk, Olson varied the colors on the exteriors and the placement of the paired-home buildings.
The Rose Bowl is probably one of the most well-known attractions in Pasadena and well beyond the confines of the city as well. A million visitors make the pilgrimage to the site on January 1 each new year for the Rose Bowl football game and parade. The problem for city officials was that the area all these visitors passed through on their way into and out of the stadium didnÆt convey a particularly pretty or accurate picture of their fine city.
One site in particular was ready for redevelopment, an odd-shaped piece of property that housed a salvage and auto parts yard. Literally at the gateway to the historic Rose Bowl, this blighted site sat in the middle of an area experiencing a residential resurgence. Working with the city and neighboring residents, Dave Shaffer, OlsonÆs director or forward planning and Alex Hernandez, a former Long Beach city planner, now Olson Co. director of development, created Rose Walk, an affordable, infill housing project that totally changed the look and feel of the area.
Designed by William Hezmalhalch Architects, Rose Walk is 46 paired homes with a density of about 12 units per acre. Each unit, which range in size from 1229 to 1382 sq. ft., includes private courtyard space. The development offers residents plenty of shared recreation space as well. To break up the look and feel of the units in the project Olson varied the colors and tones on the exteriors, as well as the placement of the paired-home buildings. Prices on the homes ranged from $160,000 to $185,000 at opening in June 1997. Resales at Rose Walk have appreciated considerably.
|Though density equals 12 units per acre, the paired homes at Rose Walk offer buyers privacy in outdoor courtyard spaces.
"The Rose Walk project is a fine example of how to design quality, affordable infill housing," says Karen Balchunas, City of Pasadena project planner. "Development of this residential project entailed that resolution and approval of numerous complex planning issues, and we found The Olson Company to be uniquely responsive to the need of the community throughout the entire design and construction process."
Rose Walk won Olson Co. the 1998 Pasadena Beautiful Award, the 1998 American Planning Association Award and the California Redevelopment Association Award. Olson Co.Æs success with Rose Walk - in creating homes that satisfied both its city client and home buyer customer - was the foundation for other public/private partnerships in Pasadena. Olson followed this first project in 1997 with several others, including the recently opened, award-winning Heritage Walk and the soon-to-be-opened Madison Walk.
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