FEATURED PROJECT: ELIAKIM’S WAY, MARTHA’S VINEYARD
WCA has collaborated with South Mountain Company and Island Housing Trust for projects on Martha’s Vineyard, bringing site planning expertise to housing projects whose goal is to protect the land and establish an environment conducive to building community. Here is one example.
At Eliakim’s Way, eight homes were aligned for solar gain and clustered around a central common. Parking areas were sited for easy access and limited footprint, thereby concentrating vehicular traffic and freeing the pathway circling the common to pedestrians, play space and emergency vehicle access. Several layout studies were prepared and analyzed to fit the program with the landscape. Successful designs accomplished the goals of promoting community and conservation while providing privacy, accessibility for all ages and abilities, and emergency vehicle access. The building envelope was adjusted as needed to preserve large trees and areas of greatest ecological and habitat value.
Of the 8-acre plot, 4 acres were developed and 4 acres were put into Conservation Restriction. Built by South Mountain Company to their impeccable standards, the homes have achieved LEED-Platinum certification—the highest level achievable.
In the words of one resident,
“Our neighborhood is a setting for dignified living and an unparalleled opportunity for home ownership. For some, it will be a place to raise the next generation of Island residents. We take pride in place, aiming to live according to the same enlightened ideals that make this place exemplary. The town of West Tisbury has promoted a model of progressive social and environmental design, making way for the lives of our year-round residents while preserving land and fostering stewardship. The Island has an ally in the residents of Eliakim’s Way.”
From “Our community thanks you” by Matt Coffey,
a letter to the Editor of the Martha’s Vineyard Times.
Read the full letter here.
Another article on the project, “Partnering Houses and Open Space”, can be read here
Trees 12” caliper and over were surveyed. Large, healthy specimens and stands were noted and the design reflected to preserve those trees.
All units were oriented to true south and mounted with photovoltaic panels. Combined with super-insulated walls, these homes have the potential for net-zero energy use.
Vehicular circulation and parking hug the perimeter while pedestrians dominate the inner circle and common green.
FEATURED PROJECT: ELAYNE’S CORNER, SHAKESPEARE & COMPANY
THY ETERNAL SUNSHINE SHALL NOT FADE
A vibrant, colorful garden is under construction at the Bernstein Theatre of Shakespeare and Company in Lenox, MA. Large planters and flower pots hold an herbaceous feast for the eyes; water dances from a fountain imbued with the Bard’s word; movable seats give you a place to lounge in the peace of the space. We have had the honor and privilege to have been a part of this very special project that celebrates the life of Elayne Polly Bernstein.
“Thy eternal sunshine shall not fade,
So long as men can breathe, or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.” Sonnet XVIII