A development called Sage Gardens in Sacramento, CA addresses the need for affordable senior housing. It is equipped with 144-unit complex with water conservation and energy-efficient features to benefit the environment. Designed by ANX / Aaron Neubert Architects, a vacant lot was erected into a prototype for an affordable housing community for developer CCH.
Units are integrated into nature with copious natural light and large windows that provide views of the surrounding landscape. The goal of the Sage Gardens design was to develop “a tool kit to deploy across multiple jurisdictions and site configurations, ANX created a flexible environment of planned and organic strategies that encourage health through social engagement and communion with nature.”
More than just an attempt to make a homey atmosphere, the green design elements show a respect for the environment. For example, rainwater harvesting techniques will source water for landscaping. The landscaping choices are low maintenance due to native and drought-resistant plants. Further water savings are seen through greywater recycling, allowing lightly used water to be diverted to toilets for a second use.
Additionally, the entire Sage Gardens complex was designed to embrace modular design by stacking modular units to create each space. This results in minimal site impact and nominal waste.
Every layer of the building merges with green design elements, like the green roof that provides premium insulation and optimal performance. Similarly, carefully constructed and placed overhangs function to minimize excess heat gains while allowing in sunlight and warmth during the winter.
The site plan places the living units around centralized gathering areas that include paths, community gardens, recreational facilities, social services, a cafe and more. Rooftops provide access to raised bed gardens. Meanwhile, all of the modular units are placed to best benefit from solar power, which is collected through photovoltaic panels on the rooftops.
Images via ANX / Aaron Neubert Architects