Del Oro seems to be well-intentioned but it misses the mark on reality. This apartment complex is located in Chula Vista, on a corner that is non-pedestrian friendly due to high speed and unpredictable traffic, yet the building has a prominent facade facing the street corner. Because walking in this area is so unpleasant and because street parking is very limited, the chance of pedestrians walking anywhere near the corner is highly unlikely. Anyone coming to this complex will be coming by car. The effect is that your attention is drawn to a point on the building which is not accessible. Maybe this is all fine, because the prominent corner that announces itself as a hard-to-access entrance- is not an entrance! It feels unwelcoming and misleading. Not a good start.
The building’s style also misses the mark. Studio E describes it as being inspired by Cliff May, and while one can appreciate this goal, the whole thing comes off looking cheap and institutional. It has the appearance of something like a DMV office or a charter school. Box-like with trendy adornments, exposed outdoor common spaces with no shade. If this project was meant to blend in with the nearby Costco and Walmart, consider it a success. But we are talking about people’s homes. Del Oro does nothing to show itself as a private space where residents can feel comfortable and secure or a place where residents can form any kind of shared community with each other. South Bay deserves better architecture.