Portfolio Project Detail

The GROVE Bojana Jerinic, Aidan Carruthers, Rufina Wu, and Elsa Snyder

The GROVE transforms LA’s industrial areas into vibrant neighborhoods with an intentional, people-centered approach to community building.The GROVE seeks to subvert status quo by creating a housing development that is designed for the residents, not dictated by the market. This holistic approach acknowledges that modern lifestyles are increasingly diverse, and solutions for a range of incomes and backgrounds are in lacking in typical developments. Food-centric spaces act as the main social and economic catalysts for the project, bringing both residents and community members together around a shared ritual.

An equitable approach to density.
We can’t all live in single-family houses – we need to learn how to live together to create an equitable planet and shrink our carbon footprint. At the same time, housing needs to be designed for people, not for the market. Market-driven, profit-focused housing delivery models perpetuate urban loneliness and isolation. High-density residential developments fail to meet the needs of people from diverse backgrounds and income levels. The GROVE imagines a gentler, district-wide up-zoning as an alternative approach to opportunistic spot rezoning.

Cultural shift towards the collective.
While co-living options exist in North America, they mainly cater to a specific demographic (single, young professionals). For a large portion of the population, the concept of sharing is considered foreign and carries negative connotations. Change management to ease the transition from individualistic to collective is needed. The GROVE offers a spectrum of shared living to allow LA residents to re-discover a communal lifestyle at their own pace and comfort level.

Enduring sustainability.
We need to re-imagine how we live together to create an equitable planet. In addition to high-performance, low-embodied carbon building practices, sustainable food practice is key to our future success. Food waste, transportation, and growth are large contributors to climate change. Located on the site of a former citrus farm, the GROVE is designed as a sustainable loop in which community members take an active role in the food cycle: from growing, to cooking, to collecting, processing, and re-purposing food waste. Reducing our carbon foot print both locally and globally is key to creating an equitable future for all.

Food is the glue.
Food the common denominator that’s shared across all ages, all genders, all cultures. Those who eat together, stay together. Communal living spaces centered around food bring people of all backgrounds together. The GROVE features synergistic functional program designed around food. In addition to residents-only communal cooking and eating spaces, the publicly accessible ground level contains Corner Café, PREP (a commissary kitchen), Mateo Eats (a non-profit catering and restaurant), and small-scale retail units featuring local food vendors. On the weekends, the open-air Atrium transforms into a Farmers’ Market.