Serving our Local Communities
“The building challenges both the historic and modern typology of the duplex.”
Designed and built to be a solution to the growing problem of escalating rent prices in Kansas City, The Waldo Duplex was designed to be a home for two moderately low-income families that want to live and work in Waldo, but otherwise could not afford to. Rent is increasing in the city at a rate higher than the national average, which negatively affects lower-income neighborhoods such as Waldo. Located amid the single-family bungalows and shotgun homes of the Waldo neighborhood, the duplex is targeted at households making less than 80% of the areas median income and implements rent controls. The completed project suggests a duplex can be built affordably without sacrificing architectural integrity.
This project sought to provide affordable rent while satisfying the clients' economic model. The building challenges both the historic and modern typology of the duplex. While developers today use the duplex model in a way that creates suburban neighborhoods with no identity, the Waldo Duplex inherits the benefits of duplex construction, but works to redefine the building typology.
Overall, the students involved in this project sought to understand why affordable housing solutions often fall short. Typical affordable housing design only advances perceptions of inequality rather than fights them. The Waldo Duplex proves affordability and thoughtful architecture are not mutually exclusive.
The front porch became a spotlight of the Waldo Duplex, from an architectural viewpoint as well as for the unity it inspires. Minimal maintenance, durability and long-life span were considerations when specifying materials and protective coatings. Valmont Coatings Salina Galvanizing helped teach the students that hot-dip galvanizing would meet their project requirements by providing superior corrosion protection, with virtually no maintenance while enhancing the final aesthetic look of the porch.
Valmont Coatings was excited to be part of such an innovative solution addressing a nation-wide problem and proud to be part of the progression toward higher quality, low-income housing; therefore, all the galvanizing work was completed free of charge. All the contributing partners involved with this project have certainly made a statement within the architectural and housing industry. Recognition from various local news outlets as well as Architectural Magazine provides the exposure to begin influencing the industry in a new direction.