PMI, one of the pioneers of creative office, is now focusing its attention on “creative multifamily” properties. This undertaking targets gentrifying urban areas, focusing on neighborhoods that are near public transit and local amenities (bars, restaurants, shopping, etc.). By utilizing many of the architectural elements popular in our creative office product, PMI renovates obsolete properties into hip, modern apartments that appeal to Gen Y, knowledge workers, the creative class, and urbanites; hence, the “creative multifamily.”
- Highlight structural building elements wherever possible. This may involve any of the following: removing drywall ceilings and exposing the natural wood ceilings to achieve volume, restoring the original wood floors or removing carpet to polish concrete slabs, and cutting new windows and sliding doors.
- Reconfigure and improve the floor plan, layout, and circulation to meet the needs and lifestyles of the Gen Y knowledge worker. This reconfiguration may combine living, dining, and kitchen into one large room that encourages collaboration. Kitchens are opened up and dining bars are employed to create a café atmosphere. Bedrooms are enlarged to efficient sizes. Interiors are made to feel modern while maintaining the architectural character of the original structure.
- Create new, centrally located common area patios with tables, chairs, and barbeques in a hotel roof club atmosphere. This recognizes the collaborative and social nature of the Gen Y knowledge worker.
- Modernize the bathrooms with contemporary cabinets but maintain the tiles in character with the buildings. Kitchens have contemporary cabinets and counters with new stainless steel appliances.
- Recognize the new green initiatives by installing insulation, double pane windows, and skylights.
- Create indoor/outdoor living by making private outdoor spaces accessed through large interior door openings.
- Equip units with new HVAC split systems and a washing machine and dryer.
Like their desire for a different office environment, this generation’s knowledge workers desire a different, more relevant and expressive apartment environment with affordable rents. Creative multifamily provides a more expressive and design oriented dwelling for the young creative knowledge worker. This resonates with their hip and collaborative nature and will satisfy their desire to live in an urban property that is “not their father’s first apartment.”