In Fill - 02

in·fill/ˈinˌfil/See definitions in:

  1. material that fills or is used to fill a space or hole."the cave infill consists of silt and rock"
  1. fill or block up (a space or hole)."the inlets at Seaford are now infilled"

In the last few decades, urban decay has increased within the city urban fabric; due to the deterioration of the inner city and increase in population. High income citizens abandoned their houses demanding a better quality of life outside the city fabric, leading the old city to be occupied by poorer households or left vacant. Urban decay is linked to suburban sprawl as the economic life is pulled out of the city, instead of a previously developed urban site within the old city fabric. Infill development is the new development of vacant, abandoned, passed over, or underutilized land within built-up areas of existing communities, where infrastructure is already in place. It is a solution to filling gaps in existing communities and playing a critical role in achieving community revitalization, land conservation and alternatives to sprawl development. Taking advantage of existing infrastructure, increasing walkability by contributing safe and attractive pedestrian environment, creating new opportunities for mixed use that recapture the “sense of place” that is largely missing in development projects. Infill development is a solution to enhancing the character, viability and function of the old city.

According to the Urban Land Institute's Urban Infill Housing Myth and Fact Report, "the rapid growth of infill housing in U.S. cities has been spurred in large part by the emerging market demand from people moving back to the city." However, the institute's report also stated that "despite the construction and population gains, doubts remain that this trend can continue."

Affordable Infill Housing Myths and Reality

Increases social problems and crimeMost affordable housing residents are responsible workers, students and pensioners. Excluding lower-income households from economically successful neighbourhoods concentrates poverty which increases social problems and crime overall.
Reduces local property valuesAllowing higher densities tends to increase local property values by allowing more development per acre.
Increases traffic and parking congestionAffordable infill development may increase local traffic, although far less than most traffic models predict, and because households tend to reduce their vehicle travel by moving to walkable urban neighbourhoods, total traffic problems decline.
Reduces greenspaceAlthough infill development may displace local greenspace, such housing requires minimal land per unit and so preserves greenspace overall compared with lower-density urban expansion.
Destroys community characterAffordable infill can enhance a community’s character: it creates more diverse and vibrant neighbourhoods that include workers, students, pensioners and artists. Many people who currently oppose affordable infill development may need such housing for themselves or loved ones sometime in the future.

Opponents often exaggerate the costs and overlook benefits of affordable infill housing. Their criticisms reflect inaccurate or incomplete analysis.


Location:Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Year:    2022

Team:    180 Development
         Eight Twenty Energy Consultant

Oklahoma City is seeing a growth trend in population. This includes a large segment of the population finding housing in or near the urban core.

This site backs up to a large urban park in an existing neighborhood filled with single family bungalows built primarily in the 1920’s. The design was driven by a desire to remain visually contextual to its neighbors while integrating community based architectural and site design concepts.

Each unit includes a separate private entry and covered porch with individual private dog runs and exterior bike racks. The project avoids the typical “snout house” curbside character by tying the two primary structures together with a covered parking awning tucked neatly between them. The high-pitched roofs provide exterior cohesion and interior volume for each of the modest sized units.

The entire project will utilize an array of solar panels that in addition to the environmental benefits will also create an energy use cost savings that can be passed onto the tenants. Working with energy consultants the design incorporates a well- constructed and tightly sealed thermal envelope; controlled ventilation; properly sized, high-efficiency heating and cooling systems; and energy-efficient doors, windows, and appliances.

The architecture reflects the existing context while allowing a higher density and energy efficient use on the site.

Construction is slated to begin on site in 2022.

copyright 2021, adam lanman   contact: adam@atelieral.com