147 Hyde Park Avenue
What do the 24 condos in the Tilia Jamaica Plain complex, located at 143 to 147 Hyde Park Avenue, have to offer residents? Among the newest luxury condos in the area, the five building development offers a range of amply outfitted flats and townhouses featuring multiple bedrooms, bathrooms, and exterior decks, with an emphasis on sustainability and comfort. Each building has five floors, including a basement for parking and storage. The property is expected to attain a Silver LEED certification.
Floor Plans and Choice of Finishes
The units range in size from 828 square feet to 1,825 square feet, and come in either the Unit A configuration (which is located on the first two floors of the complex) or the Unit B configuration (which is located on floors three and four of the complex). The typical floor plan of the two to three bedroom units situates the staircase cleverly behind the kitchen, creating an open floor plan that maximizes space on both levels. The kitchen is often situated in the middle of the lower floor, with a living room on one side and a dining room on the other.
The kitchen traditionally features an island and a dedicated appliance wall for the stainless steel refrigerator, the four burner top stove and oven, the microwave oven, the dishwasher, and other amenities. In addition to featuring a sink and cabinets for storage space, the kitchen island has an overhanging counter on the back side to facilitate seating of up to five people, depending on the type of chairs used for seating. However, the units have also been crafted to be adaptable; the relatively open floor plan allows each resident to customize their living space based on their preferred arrangement of furnishings.
The upper floor features a series of bedrooms and bathrooms connected by an airy, light-filled hallway. The guest bedrooms are positioned to share a common bathroom. Depending on the number of bathrooms in each unit, some floor plans feature a half bath or full bathroom on the lower floor as well, with a guest bedroom facing the street. The bedrooms range in size from 12’-0” x 11’5” to 16’-0” X 12’-0” for a guest bedroom to 13’-10” X 12’-7” for the master bedroom. In most units, the master bedroom features an ample master bathroom, with a built-in closet. The master bathrooms can range in size from 8’-2” X 12’-4” to 8’-4” X 12’-7”, with an adjoining private WIC of 12’-7” X 5’-0”. Regardless of floor placement, the bedrooms feature large windows that not only provide beautiful views, but also act as light wells for the unit at large, helping to create a vibrant, well-lit atmosphere.
The units can feature an outdoor or roof deck. The outdoor decks are accessible directly from the living room, while the roof decks are accessible from the hallway directly adjacent to the staircase on the upper floor. The dimensions of the outdoor deck on the Unit A configuration range from 20’-4” X 21’-4” to 22’-6” X 21’-9”, while the roof deck on the Unit B configuration is usually 20’-5” X 6’0”. Both types of decks are accessible via triple-paned sliding glass doors that provide an excellent visual throughline between the interior and exterior of the unit.
In addition to offering a variety of different bedroom and bathroom configurations, the Tilia Jamaica Plain condos also allow residents their choice of decor. The amenities and materials within the townhouses and flats can be styled in one of two finishes; either the “nature” finish, or the “urban” finish.
Exploring The Nature Finish
The nature finish has been crafted to create a feeling of organic relaxation, with a soft color palette and warm, welcoming materials reminiscent of natural vistas and open terrain. Curves are a prominent feature of the scheme, as well as softer textures. This design concept is anchored by the hardwood floors throughout the units, which are supplied by Shaw Floors and are made of prefinished solid red oak in the saddle color.
An exquisite attention to detail in the choice of each of the appliances and decor accents creates an instant impression of luxurious living. The kitchen cabinets are of the ultracraft slab door variety, featuring a piper “desert” vertical on the upper cabinets, and a piper “raw cotton” vertical on the lower cabinets. In terms of surfaces, the kitchen countertop is made of the “blizzard” varietal of caeserstone quartz, featuring a backsplash made up of shaw tile, with a highlight of white “facet” glass tiles. The stainless steel undermount sink is provided by Vigo, while the kitchen faucet is a Grohe “concetto” with a chrome finish. The majority of the kitchen appliances, with the exception of the garbage disposal, are supplied by Jenn-Air. The refrigerator is a stainless steel model with a 36 inch counter depth french door, while the microwave and hood is a 30 inch stainless steel model. The dishwasher has a trifecta six cycle wash, while the 30 inch stainless steel gas range offers four easy to clean burners. The garbage disposal is an insinkerator badger 5XP series, with ¾ horsepower for efficient waste processing.
The bathrooms compliment the aesthetic palette of the kitchen, although the accent wood finishes shift from oak to teak. The master bathroom features a 56-⅝ inch double vanity with soft close teak doors, while the common bath is equipped with the “Fresca Nano” 23-⅜ inch vanity, also with soft close teak doors. In those units that have a powder room, the “Fresca Nano” is also included. All bathroom faucets and shower heads are outfitted with the chrome finish of the Grohe “concetto” water efficient faucet line, while the toilets are the white, dual-flush Kohler “persuade” model. A Kohler archer acrylic shower pan comes standard in those units that do not feature a sit-down bath, while a Kohler archer acrylic tub is included for those units that do. While both the powder room and bathrooms feature an 8 inch towel ring and toilet paper holder manufactured by Grohe, only the bathrooms have a Grohe 24 inch towel rail. The wall and floor tiles in the bathroom are the Porcelanosa Rodano Caliza line, while the accent tiles are of the Porcelanosa Mosaico Rodano Caliza variety.
The mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems have been designed with energy efficiency in mind. The hot water heater is a Navien high efficiency tankless gas water heater, while fresh air ventilation is provided by a RenewAire GR90 energy recovery ventilator. The exterior of the structure itself is clad in HardiePlank and HardiePanels Fiber Cement siding, while the unit boasts high R-values with its double insulated exterior envelope, earning a rating of R-40 for the walls, and R-49 for the ceilings. Meanwhile, the Pella 350 triple pane series insures that both the windows and sliding doors keep the unit warm in the winter and cool in the summer.
Exploring The Urban Finish
Unlike the nature finish, the urban finish favors a more linear approach, seeking a minimal yet relaxing array of materials and tones. Instead of looser curves, a more prominent geometric approach is employed.
While the kitchen appliances and mechanical, electrical and plumbing equipment are largely the same in the urban finish as they are in the nature finish, subtle yet key differences are featured throughout the accent woods, tiles, and countertops. As an example, the kitchen cabinets in the urban finish feature a Metropolis “burnish walnut vertical” on the upper cabinets, while the lower cabinets are ornamented with an Adriatic “Satin White.” The kitchen countertop, while also made of caeserstone quartz, is outfitted in the “haze” finish, while the backsplash tile is of the super white glass variety.
The bathrooms also have subtle differences. Instead of being made of teak, the urban master bathroom vanity is fashioned from gray oak, as is the “Fresca Nano” vanity, which is once again featured in both the common bath and powder room. The urban bathroom also offers a difference in tile, decorating walls and floor in the Porcelanosa Park Acero, while the accent tile is made of the Porcelanosa Park Lineal Acero.
Finally, the hardwood floor is of a different shade; instead of the saddle color featured in the nature units, the urban unit floors are fitted with solid red oak in the weathered color.
The Importance of Sustainability and LEED Certification
The Tilia Jamaica Plain units were designed not only to beautiful, but to be energy efficient. The physical layout of the units, along with the inclusion of energy star appliances and highly energy conscious materials such as triple-paned windows, creates spaces that make use of natural light and easy ventilation. This is especially useful in the Massachusetts climate, which sees large ranges in temperature and humidity throughout the year. From the exterior siding to the meticulously crafted hardwood floors, each unit functions as a reliable sanctuary regardless of the weather. Most importantly, residents can live in luxurious surroundings without having to spend a fortune to maintain their comfort: the array of energy-efficient appliances and structural insulation reduces utility bills and helps effortlessly preserve a comfortable, relaxing atmosphere.
Additionally, the physical proximity of the units, and their relative density within the development, creates a vibrant feeling of community while simultaneously providing private space for each resident. Friendships among neighbors can develop organically, while also preserving a quiet, relaxing personal abode. This kind of spatial relationship, sometimes grouped under the heading of “home management and durability,” predicts a long and healthy life for the complex, as residents develop a special investment in their surroundings. Those who buy condos in this building will not only live here, but thrive here.
Because of this emphasis on sustainability, the units are expected to garner a Silver LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Green Building Rating System) Certification. This third-party certification, which is overseen by the US Green Building Council, values the creation of so-called “green homes.” A green home not only has a reduced energy usage compared to ordinary homes, but it also is both more comfortable and healthier for those who live in it. There are several categories on which a home or building is ranked; Innovation and Design, Location and Linkages, Sustainable Sites, Water Efficiency, Energy and Atmosphere, Materials and Resources, Awareness and Education, and Indoor Environmental Quality.
In this specific case, the development’s focus on innovation and design with respect to home management and durability is expected to help earn the Silver LEED certification. The development is also located on an urban infill site, and has excellent access to both public transit and open space, particularly Franklin Park, the Arnold Arboretum, and the Southwest Harbor Trail. As briefly referred to above, the units also rank high in both water efficiency and energy usage: specifically, the extraordinarily efficient water fittings and appliances work together with the enhanced air ventilation and exhaust, as well as the double insulated high performance walls, ceilings and floors, to foster a likely Silver rating.
The LEED certification isn’t just about the finished product, however. The certification also takes into account the sustainability of the construction process. In this case, during construction environmentally preferable building products were used, such as bamboo, soybean-based products, agrifibers and hemp. The use of these materials cuts down on the production of harmful waste products. Additionally, the assembly team practiced indoor containment control to ensure a higher environmental quality indoors, while all extraneous materials from construction were put through a meticulous waste management planning and reduction process. This helped to mitigate waste products during construction, which boosts the overall ranking in the Materials and Resources category. In this sense, the development is holistically sustainable, from its conception to its execution.
Once a property has achieved a LEED certification, its resale value is traditionally higher than properties that do not carry this distinction.
Other Building Amenities
The luxury condominiums have been sited on the property in such a way that each unit has some immediate access to green space and a welcoming relationship to the street. Again, this spatial relationship offers a subtle benefit to both individual residents and the community at large: by fostering a visual relationship with the street, the condos transcend their role as property and become part of a home and a larger neighborhood. The condos, which are designed to take advantage of the deep reach of the lot, face the street on one end and a relaxing, greenery-infused space on the other. The exterior decks on the ground floor offer residents instant access to the joys of outdoor living, making it easy to barbeque and entertain in summer, or simply enjoy a refreshing morning or evening beverage year-round. Similarly, the roof decks give residents an enchanting view of their surroundings, as well as providing them with private space to stretch out and relax.
Dedicated parking spots, as well as additional storage space, are provided at the basement level. Each parking space is 8’ X 18”, while the storage spaces are 4’-6” X 15’-6” each. Many of the units feature not only an entrance from the street, but a second door that leads directly to the basement level to make it easy to access parked vehicles and stored goods. Many of the three bedroom units automatically come with one parking space, while each unit also is provided with one storage space. A central trash collection area is also located in the basement.
The development has been designed to offer a range of easily accessible, and quickly customizable, amenities.
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