Last year Hatch + Ulland Owen Architects was asked by the Housing Authority of the City of Austin (HACA) to develop an economic feasibility study for the restoration and rehabilitation of six structures at Rosewood Courts. The first phase Rosewood Courts, built in 1938, was the very first public housing for African Americans in the United States, thanks largely to the efforts of Senator Lyndon Johnson. The modern design served a community that needed affordable housing desperately, not unlike the present.
HACA, the nearby community, and the residents concluded that, after many deliberations, to honor the rich history of Rosewood, eight of the phase-1 structures would be restored and rehabilitated to comfortably accommodate existing residents. The eighty-year-old structures are structurally sound, but need major rehabilitation to meet current code, be accessible, and provide a home that no longer feels like a “jail” said one of the residents. All would welcome central air-conditioning, new kitchens and baths as well as wide doors and rooms that are comfortable.
This approach also allows many new multi-family homes on the site that would almost double the amount of new homes, some of which would be owner occupied.
After presenting this concept and getting unanimous approval of the Landmark Commission, the Planning Commission, and last Thursday, the City Council, the many residents that had been attending and speaking at the 3 meetings jumped for joy.
h+uo architects is very excited to be apart of this Historic Rehabilitation of the Rosewood Courts. We will provide updated interiors to Rosewood Courts while restoring the exterior to its former self. The structures will be made to meet all current code and to provide modern finishes in he interior.