ROJO Architecture is pleased to see their design of the Portland Apartments, a 12 story building in downtown St. Petersburg, completed on time and in budget. More importantly, the project is 100% leased. The developer, 908 Development, hosted a ribbon cutting in November, with guests including city council members and St. Petersburg Mayor Bill Foster.
The developer presented ROJO Architecture with the name “The Portland”, as their projects were categorized by major metropolitan areas. Taking punches in stride from local and Portland-based media, ROJO pulled influence from the (nearby) seaside cliffs of the Portland area and a local export, the Portland rose. The external elevator tower is layered with materials revealing striations in keeping with the towering cliffs of the Northwest. Public art at the pedestrian level masks the parking garage with oversized roses, cut from steel, painted brightly pink and green, reinforcing the concept and inviting passers-by.
The Portland is a 68 unit, 12 story affordable housing development with three stories of garage parking. The upscale look is indicative of the desire to create a space worthy of maintaining and protecting. There is great precedence in urban design creating spaces worth “defending’, something that famous writer Jane Jacobs calls “eyes on the street” or natural surveillance. The design is also a catalyst for future projects in the area, now blighted with old buildings ripe for redevelopment.
The finished project features secure, covered parking, fitness center, Internet Cafe, putting green and a third floor rooftop patio. All of these amenities are designed with green/sustainable building practices which help to make this project one of 2011’s finest examples of successful construction projects. Batson Cook was the contractor for the project and took 12 months to build the completed project.
ROJO has survived the market conditions with their diversity in project types. While current trends focus on medical, multi-family, hospitality and custom residential, ROJO has completed over 85 church projects, hundreds of commercial office projects, schools, childcare and financial institutional projects.
ROJO Architecture is a local planning, architecture and interiors firm. The firm produces about 50 projects per year including custom residential, multi-family, religious, medical, retail, hospitality and education. The award-winning design firm has designed such local projects as The Portland Apartments, Boizao Steakhouse, 3405 Cityhomes, St. Andrews Episcopal Church Preservation and Children’s Chapel, and HARC’s Center for Life Development. Recently recognitions include the Tampa Bay Business Journal’s Business of the Year - Professional Services, Metal Architecture Magazine Leader in Metal Design, AIA’s People’s Choice for Design Award, and the Hillsborough County Planning Commission’s Award of Excellence. Images and in-depth histories can be found at www.getROJO.com.