Monday, June 23, 2008

Obnoxious Architecture - Lane Company

I started to write a response to Terry's comment, but my response kept growing to the point that I decided to make it a full post. Terry asks about Atlantic Station:
I'd award an "Obnoxious Architecture" award to all the low-rise residential at Atlantic Station ... How did they go so wrong on the residential?
There are a few buildings in Atlantic Station that qualify, starting with the Beazer townhomes on 16th street. With Beazer, I think they simply did not fully understand the in-town market. At the time they were almost entirely a suburban developer, and Atlantic Station was one of their first forays into the city. So you unsurprisingly ended up with a product that looked very suburban.

The Lane Co. stuff, like Metro... I don't know what to tell you without being very mean to Lane. I respect a number of folks who have been involved with Lane over the years, so I'll try to be relatively nice. The simplest way it to just keep it basic: Their architecture leaves a lot to be desired pretty regularly. The real question is why would you expect anything different from Lane based on their history.

For example, in 2004 Creative Loafing had this to say about Lane's CityView development:
The CityView apartments and condos have one thing going for them: Residents there have a great view of Atlanta's skyline.

Too bad the stucco monstrosity at Boulevard and Freedom Parkway blocks out chunks of the view for the rest of us. To add insult to injury, CityView's design makes it look like a cheap-ass hotel on the strip in Panama City Beach.
Ouch. I can't say I disagree very much. I really want to like Lane Co... they typically get very good locations, they build mid-rise multi-family and mixed-use projects, and they aren't afraid of urban locations. But wow, they might have the most obnoxious architecture in the city.

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