Tiny Tower Residence Designed as a Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

Tiny Tower Residence

Project: Tiny Tower Residence
Architects: ISA –Interface Studio Architects
Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Area 1250.0 ft2
Project Year 2018
Photographer: Sam Oberter Photography

Tiny Tower Residence places a 1250 SF home on a 12’ by 29’ lot, whose similarly scaled neighbors are currently used as single-car parking and rear yards for the adjacent houses. An expanded section that maximizes height under the zoning code, as well as depth of foundation, creates six levels of usable space. The design promotes vertical living for both indoor and outdoor space, occupying the entire footprint of the site in the required setbacks with a lower level window garden, a second level walk out terrace, and a roof deck.

Tiny Tower Residence Designed as a Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

Although it measures only 38’ in height, Tiny Tower Residence is organized like a full-scale skyscraper. Linked by a strong core of vertical circulation, each level is similar in size and quality, allowing for flexible programming. With a kitchen at the lower level and tucked away bathrooms on upper ones, each floor is free to define live, work and play in multiple configurations. The biggest challenge in a vertical house with a tiny footprint is stair configuration. A folded plate metal stair with winder treads pushed up against the front facade of the building creates a dramatic, light-filled circulation stack that affords surprising views inside and out as well as a sense of adventure for the occupants. The experience of going up and down the stair is integral to the daily life of the building.

Tiny Tower Residence Designed as a Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

Urban dwellers are increasingly willing to trade quantity of space for quality. Living in a small unit in a vibrant, walkable neighborhood is more desirable than a larger home in a far-flung location. Tiny Tower Residence demonstrates how small in scale can feel large in amenity and experience.

Tiny Tower Residence Designed as a Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

Tiny Tower Residence Designed as a Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

bedrooms, Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

Tiny Tower Residence Designed as a Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

office, Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

stairs, Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

Tiny Tower Residence Designed as a Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

Tiny Tower Residence Designed as a Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

Tiny Tower Residence Designed as a Mini-Skyscraper Prototype for Small Lots

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