In an era where developer-driven projects favor the ease of new construction, the developer and architect team for Maplewood chose the more challenging yet more sustainable route of preservation. The most significant positive environmental outcome of this decision was the diversion of tons of masonry and demolition debris away from the waste stream. Frequently, the most sustainable strategy is the most obvious one. Tearing down a completely functional building shell only to replace with a new one seemed environmentally counterproductive despite this being the standard of practice in the speculative development world. As a team we took an 1890s era building, preserved the existing shell, and introduced modern heating/cooling equipment and efficient open cell spray applied insulation. The end is result is four comfortable and efficient modern apartments contained within a classic Chicago Greystone exterior which can easily serve the neighborhood for another century.
Maplewood involved the complete demolition and reconstruction of the interior of an existing four-unit Greystone located near the 606 trail. All four units were reconfigured to accommodate a floor plan which includes a combination living/kitchen area, two bedrooms, and two bathrooms. The new floor plan is an improvement on the original three bedroom one bathroom floor plan, commonly seen in Chicago multi-unit buildings of this era. In addition, the exterior was improved to both preserve and enhance the distinctive Greystone characteristics of the building.