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Brea & Elm Collection

Brea, CA


Mixed-Use | Live/Work


Single Family Detached Sustainable

30 Units

1.67 AC

17.9 U/A


Design Development

Presentation Graphics

Colors and Materials


City Ventures


Developing infill locations that straddle older residential and emerging commercial uses can be challenging. This L-shaped, 30 unit site in Brea, CA is located on a major arterial that is transitioning to more commercial uses, and our 19 live/work, 8 duplex, and 3 single-family home solution offers a sensitive transition for the adjacent historic neighborhood. 

Starting at the L-corner, we created a generous public plaza that showcases sculptures from local artists and offers an area for community events.  Along the main street, each live/work home has a linear covered arcade to create the urban street edge that also created large decks for the living spaces above. The second and third floors were set back to better emphasize the commercial corridor.  To integrate the product types we designed a central covered retail plaza that connects the interior duplex homes, and the three single-family homes softened the impact for the adjoining single-family residents.  The existing grade created massing challenges but each product type works seamlessly together, and by incorporating the local Spanish Colonial and Craftsman styles, these homes assimilate into the community. The appeal reaches a wide range from small business owners to families requiring private yards. Nearby parks and retail use eliminated the cost for on-site amenities. 

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