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About this Property
The little piece of land that this duplex sits on seems to have been the parking lot of the nearby 68-70 Battey Street, or 445 West Fountain Street. From aerial photos, it looked like a car lot for vehicles to be worked on, like many lots in the area. The cars are present in a 2003-2004 aerial photo. It does not look like a building has been present on this site since 1981.1 According to the latest Sanborn Maps we have access to, there was still a house present at this location in 1956.2
The lot history in the tax records for 64 Battey Street only go back to 2010. In 2012, an entity called “Infill Development” purchased the lot. We presume this cheeky name to be associated with Peter Case and his development partner.2
Soon after, ground broke on this modern, energy-efficient duplex.
This rectangular, hard-edged building in the middle of late 19th-century and early-20th century homes is a bit of an oddity, but that is the kind of contrast that we appreciate. This design takes the familiar two- and three-family home design and applies modern building principals to it to achieve an energy efficiency that no reasonable amount of retrofitting can achieve in a historic building. And it does so on an otherwise forgotten, empty urban lot. This is some of the smartest infill we have seen since, well, the Box Office.
Instead of an apartment per floor, each townhouse unit has a similar layout rotated around a similarly located entrance stairway. Kitchen, half bath, and living room are on the first floor while two bedrooms and a full bath are on the second. Again, its a great idea that reduces the noise from your neighbors being above you in the same rooms at the same time of day.
In the News
Providence | New townhomes energy-saving stars
by Christine Dunn
Providence Journal | March 31, 2013
The team that built the Box Office, the bright blue, green and yellow office building made from shipping crates, has brought its minimalist urban aesthetic to a new residential project on the West Side.
Architect/developer Peter Gill Case and business partner Jordan Durham have built two energy-saving townhomes on a lot on Battey Street near Luongo Square. The townhomes, at 64 and 66 Battey St., off Broadway, are priced at $224,900 and $249,900.
The two-bedroom, two-bathroom units were built to meet Tier 3 status, the highest Energy Star ranking for new construction. The estimated annual energy costs for each home are $1,933. Case said the townhomes have a Home Energy Rating System rating of 45, which means that the energy consumption of each home is about 55 percent less than that of a code compliant new home.
The modern units have an open-concept design. Each has a large eat-in kitchen with deep sinks, stainless steel appliances, and quartz countertops. Both units also have full basements that could be finished or used for storage.
Case said that his “eagle-eyed” partner, Durham, found the empty lot, near aging multifamily and commercial buildings, for “very little money.” The lot was zoned for commercial use.
He said that as a “half-architect, half developer,” in a down economy, the Box Office, on Harris Avenue (and visible from the 6-10 highway connector), was “the first part of my stimulus package.” He said he has an interest in sustainable building and “abandoned urban infill projects.”
Case explained that insulation under the concrete floor of the basement, and extra insulation under the exterior siding, provides energy savings by reducing “thermal bridging.” He said the bathroom fans are always on and provide the fresh-air exchange that is necessary in tightly insulated environments.
The townhomes are being marketed by Geo Properties Inc. of Providence. Listing agent Katie Cocuzzo staged one of the townhomes with furnishings from local designers, including O&G Studios of Warren and Studio Dunn of Providence.
An open house is planned Sunday, April 7, from 1 to 3 p.m. For more information, see www.batteystreetproject.com
DUNN, CHRISTINE. “Providence | New townhomes energy-saving stars.” Providence Journal (RI), 1 ed., sec. Features, 31 Mar. 2013, p. PJHOME_01. NewsBank: America’s News, infoweb.newsbank.com/apps/news/document-view?p=NewsBank&docref=news/1524211B82E6C470. Accessed 4 Apr. 2022.