The nomination for this project stated that “it sucks to nominate a much-needed affordable housing project for an Onion.” The jury concurred, and although it sucks even more to award it they also found Mission Apartments “both bad and offensive,” with “flat and monotonous facades and a lack variety and articulation.” In fact, the only design detail detected was that the building corresponds well with a neighboring A-1 Storage Facility.
This new affordable housing complex is located on Hancock Street next to the airport, adjacent to highway and railway lines offering ample public transportation access, and a plethora of exciting new commercial and mixed-use residential developments. Instead of maximizing this potential by providing an interesting and engaging design that incorporated more open, communal recreational areas and enhanced amenities, the architects provided residents with patchy green plots, 7 ½’ ceilings and panoramic views of tuck-under parking, making it feel more like a bad motel conversion. What could and should have been a meaningful addition to the community instead is one that disappointing and unsightly, and will likely not improve with age.
- Project Address: 1815 Hancock Street, San Diego CA 92110
- Project Owner/ Developer: Amcal Housing
- Owner Contact Name/ Email: Mario Turner, Mario@AmcalHousing.com
- Project Architect/ Designer: Withee Malcolm
It sucks to nominate a much-needed affordable housing project for an Onion, but they really could have done better. The facades are flat and monotonous and lack variety and articulation. Although I realize it is not entirely complete yet, I have to wonder what the quality of the only apparent community open space will be like, surrounded by a sea of tuck under parking. The jury should check this one out. I'm sure it will be finished soon.