Nearly 2,000 housing units are rising out of the ground at Luxetown, a spectacular new mixed-use residential development designed by MVE International, an affiliate of MVE & Partners, the Irvine, CA-based architecture and planning firm.
“We designed Luxetown to meet both intensive zoning regulations and market demand,” said Ernesto Vasquez, AIA, founding partner and vice president at MVE International. “The result is surprisingly progressive. For example, each residential unit has light, windows and ventilation on three sides, and there are many community amenities as well. Luxetown could sell any place in the world.”
On the outskirts of Chengdu, the 46-acre Luxetown is part of a master-planned development, envisioned as a tranquil refuge from the nearby hectic metropolis. Planned in four phases, the residential towers rising from 18 to 30 stories embrace a signature artificial lake, set like a jewel into the park-like surroundings.
MVE International, has designed a modern-day “urban village” for Luxetown, in which neighborhood sentiments and quality of life are enhanced. As a Southern California-based firm, MVE International is well-versed in creating high-rise residential towers for earthquake-prone environs.
Pedestrian paths meander through knolls at Luxetown, allowing residents and walkers to enjoy trees, scenery, exercise zones, boating and bridges, and to visit ground-floor retailers, child care centers and other amenities.
Landscaped terraces, expansive balconies, large windows and carefully planned sightlines bring apartment dwellers into the village, increasing the sense of spontaneous social interaction and “eyes on the commons.” The terraces are placed above submerged parking garages, resulting in extra green space.
Through their designing and master planning of the gently-curved towers, MVE International made sure that each residential unit obtains lake views and a minimum of two hours of solar exposure—avoiding the “darkened canyons” plague of many dense developments.
East met West in many aspects of the design of Luxetown. “The Chinese family often likes to plant vegetables. The residential balconies are large enough to allow this activity,” said Vasquez. “It is an idea that might work in America as well.”
Luxetown won a Gold Nugget award from the 2008 Pacific Coast Builders Conference, in the “International Site Plan” category.