Bridging the Gap between Concept and Budget
Mixed-use developments require significant capital outlays and operate on thin margins, creating tension between the inspiration of developers and the harsh economic realities of the lending market. Thoughtful architecture and project management can bridge this gap.
Jupiter, Florida, is a town of 55,000 residents on the Atlantic coast of Florida. This fast-growing seaside town north of West Palm Beach enjoys a reputation as a charming hamlet, while also serving as a destination retail center for two adjacent counties. Allied Capital Group and Jupiter’s planning department wished to enhance the city’s retail, office, and hospitality offerings in a way that preserved the local flavor and natural beauty of the area. They envisioned a mixed-use development designed in a variety of architectural styles—something that would appear as “a village developed over time,” rather than a cookie-cutter shopping center. Then the recession happened. The challenge of architects LEO A DALY was to fulfill that vision during an economically challenging time as the developer raised EB5 funding.
Harbourside Place is a vibrant new mixed-use development that transforms an underutilized waterfront site at a prominent intersection into a “new downtown” for Jupiter. Located in a tight triangular space formed by two main streets and Jupiter’s Riverwalk, the development mixes retail, hotel, office, restaurant, and parking uses in six unique but complementary buildings. LEO A DALY’s architecture team worked closely with the city, developer, and contractor to find the most economical means of creating an eclectic look for the development. Value-engineered variations in architectural detailing and color among the six buildings give Harbourside Place a naturalistic look, while staying within the budgetary means of the developer.
The design of Harbourside Place accomplishes a lot with a little. Using subtle variations in detailing, color, and elevation, LEO A DALY managed to design a six-building complex that reads as a “village developed over time.” Envisioned as a modern interpretation of British Colonial architecture, the design uses a variety of roofing styles, some sloped and some flat, as well as variations in rail details, fenestration and banding, to create an undulating effect across horizontal and vertical planes. This, coupled with variations in a sun-baked Caribbean color palette, breaks up the massing, lending a sense of authenticity to the development. With exacting attention to detail, LEO A DALY specified every stylistic variation for maximum effect at minimal cost.
The development’s six buildings, two of which comprise the 178-room Wyndham Grand Jupiter at Harbourside Place, fit on a well-located yet tight site along the Intracoastal Waterway. The design maximizes the small space by providing two hybrid parking/retail/restaurant structures—a pedestrian-friendly move that enhances the density and vibrancy of the environment.
The design takes full advantage of the site’s natural beauty, providing a critical link within Jupiter’s Riverwalk—a recreational walking path that follows 2.5 miles of the Waterway. The buildings are arranged to complement the Riverwalk and Waterway. Patrons entering Harbourside Place pass between two matching towers that frame the central cul-de-sac, punctuated with a marlin statue and fountain. Arching over the roadway beyond, a glass bridge connecting the two wings of the Wyndham Grand Jupiter frames views of the Waterway and Riverwalk. Special amenities include public docks for patrons arriving from the Waterway, a riverside pavilion and an outdoor amphitheater with an acoustically-designed canopy used for numerous civic and social events.
The picturesque waterfront scenery surrounding the property was the inspiration for the four-star resort Wyndham Grand Jupiter, which anchors the development. Fantastic views greet guests from the moment they walk through the door, as an open floor plan gives unobstructed views of the waterway and the wooded residential area beyond. The hotel’s orientation along the waterway creates an intimate, natural feel that is complemented by LEO A DALY’s sophisticated, timeless architectural and interior design.
Harbourside Place strikes an ideal balance between the grand concept of “a village developed over time” and the financial realities of construction in a down market. By working closely with the city, the developer and the builder to maximize the impact of variations in detailing and color, LEO A DALY was able to reduce costs while delivering a unique and vibrant mixed-use environment. The design takes great care to preserve what is compelling about the site from an aesthetic, community, and financial standpoint. The result is a beautiful new downtown for Jupiter and a financially sound investment for the developer.