To be built on an existing foundation with limited structural capacity, 1800 South Bell is designed using mass timber not only for its aesthetic and environmental value, but also for its light weight, enabling a taller building with more rentable area.
Enabling faster construction with less waste, the hybrid mass timber system also allows for more gracious ceiling heights and a warmer material palette, which complement the expansive fenestration. Further innovation is found in the unit plans, which feature an efficient “utility pod” system.
Central to the brief is an enlivening and diversifying of the Crystal City district of Arlington, Virginia, which is characterized by repetitive and outdated concrete office buildings. The new tower introduces fresh, rich materiality as well as energizing new program. With appealing residences situated above active retail in the building’s base, 1800 South Bell aims to convert Crystal City into a true live/work/play community, one which remains vibrant 24-7, all times of year.
To attract a young, mid-market demographic, the building is designed to maximize expansive views of the Potomac and the surrounding district. Its amenities include a fitness room, a roof terrace with a lounge and barbecue, work/live space, shared workspace, community terraces, and sky gardens.