2012 Blueprint Awards - Residential Development

Award of Excellence
Residential Development
2012 Blueprint Awards

Granville Homes - 330 North Van Ness Cottages, Fresno, CA


Projects Summary and Photos

330 Van Ness CottagesLocated in the Historic Lowell Neighborhood, 330 North Van Ness Cottages is a project that has successfully provided modern multi-family rental properties in an infill area of Downtown Fresno. At nineteen dwelling units per acre, the development is a great example of compact building design. The townhomes provide a myriad of environmentally friendly features including solar to offset tenant utility usage, cool roof concrete tile roofing, tankless water heaters, and energy efficient appliances. The townhomes of 330 North Van Ness Cottages offer an additional housing option for residents in the area who currently must choose from single family homes, rooms for rent, or boarding style rental units. Twenty-five percent of the units provide quality affordable housing to the area and help to realize the needs of the surrounding community.

330 North Van Ness Cottages were built on blighted property which had remained a vacant lot for more than twenty years offering residents no reason to visit the location. Now the sidewalks along historic Van Ness Avenue have been widened and the project has become a destination as well as a link between other recent and long-standing walking points in the community. The Cottages reside within two miles of entertainment venues, shopping, restaurants, retail stores, commercial, and government offices and are also centrally located between the popular Tower and Cultural Arts Districts. Numerous methods of transportation are also available to the community surrounding 330 North Van Ness Cottages, including a bicycle lane, nearby access to major freeways, and a municipal bus route and stop directly in front of the project.

The project provides a new tax-base for the City and brings needed housing to the area. The new construction brings increased property values to the surrounding region and provides many jobs in the construction industry. The Developer worked closely and collaboratively with neighborhood groups, public agencies, and others to create a project that provided value and a sense of place while respecting this special community in Downtown Fresno. The unique and innovative development brings focus to the area and is a welcome addition to the historic neighborhood.


 Lot - Before  Lot - After
 330 Van Ness Street View  Corner View
 Walkable View  Compact Design - Front Room
 Compact Design - Kitchen  Compact Design - Bathroom






Award of Merit
Residential Development
2012 Blueprint Awards

City of Tulare, CA - Tule Vista Rent to Own Housing Development

Projects Summary and Photos

1015 Baker Street - Finished View

The Tule Vista project was initiated for the purpose of blight elimination, as the project included the removal of 20 substandard single-family homes, in a neighborhood with inconsistent lots, insufficient infrastructure, and incompatible street patterns. One of the lots was a brownfield site, which required remediation prior to development. Tule Vista integrates with the surrounding neighborhood and incorporates a variety of smart growth principles, while creating a successful affordable housing model that can be implemented throughout Tulare and other communities with extremely blighted neighborhoods.

The Tule Vista project was developed through a partnership with the Tulare Redevelopment Agency, The Pacific Companies, a for-profit developer, and Kaweah Management, a non-profit management company that is affiliated with the Housing Authority of Tulare County. The public/private partnership aspect is unique in that:

  • The Agency completed all of the land assembly, relocation, demolition/site clearance, which took over 5 years to complete.
  • The Pacific Companies {TPC), a private development firm, worked with city departments to generate a development concept that re-aligned inconsistent street patterns, integrated with the surrounding community, and provided higher-density single-family rental housing.
  • TPC worked with the Agency to evaluate the feasibility of conversion to homeownership units after the 15-year tax compliance period, and designed a financial model that allowed for the construction of single-family homes by utilizing multi-family financing.
  • The Housing Authority provided a sizable loan for the project, and Kaweah Management became a Tule Vista team partner for the ongoing management and operations of the project. The Housing Authority is a local leader in affordable housing development and management.

In addition to the successful public/private partnership, Tule Vista provides a model for single family development that can be financed and operated as rental housing, with a building in conversion plan to homeownership. This will provide an opportunity to evaluate the needs of the community in approximately 10-years, assess market trends and neighborhood factors, and begin implementing conversion opportunities for the residents at Tule Vista. While the project required substantial upfront investment, conversion provides substantial returns to repay initial debt and convert the units to homeownership. Overall, Tule Vista provides for best practices through the utilization of public/private partnerships, the unique financing/conversion model, and the higher density design focused on sustainability and integration with the surrounding community.


 Site - Before  Site - After
 During Construction  During Construction (continued)
 Park Construction  Park Construction (continued)
 Completed Units  Completed Units (continued)