Urban density created the townhouse - attached homes strung together on a series of lots, to maximize land usage (or profit to the developer, depending on who you ask).
Some townhouses aren’t any bigger than a single story apartment, but offer the feel of a stand alone home plus an individual address. Today we look at two newer townhouse developments, one in Bucktown and one in Wicker Park.
This Bucktown townhouse development uses modern materials and contrasting color to emphasize both verticality and rhythm.
The red corrugated metal (typically used industrially) both defines the separate units and ties them together like marching soldiers. The chimney stacks mark the centers of each townhouse and punctuate the sky.
The rhythm is A-A-A-A, a modern, almost industrial approach.
This Wicker Park townhouse development was informed by the historic architecture in its surroundings.
The brick material is uniform overall but has different cornice details and window styles to distinguish the units. The building exhibits the renaissance tradition of different windows on each level- creating base, piano nobile, and domestic (bedroom) levels. The arched openings book-end the sides and the rectangular, metal canopy delineates the center. Further distinguishing the units is a difference in elevation, with the center units set back.
The rhythm is A-B-A, a beaux-arts tradition.
So- just like your neighbors or just a little different- how do you like your ducks in a row? Bucktown or Wicker Park for you?