Micro-lofts Fill Demand for Downtown Living

March 28, 2013 36 comments Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

Micro-lofts are a part of a very interesting urban housing trend trend catching on in other major cities. Downtown Vision's Katherine Hardwick wonders if Is Downtown Jacksonville ripe for micro-lofts?

A floor plan example of a micro loft. Photograph courtesy of http://www.civicsurrey.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/microloft4.png

Whether you refer to them as the residential choice of the future for young professionals or “luxury shantytowns for hipsters,” micro-lofts appear to be the latest and greatest solution to urban housing shortages.

These residential units—from new developments like New York City’s first prefab apartment tower to adaptive reuse spaces, like The Arcade Providence in Providence, Rhode Island—trade spaciousness for affordability. Making the most out living spaces as small as 200-400 square feet, many micro-lofts fit into the same amount of space as a one- or two-car garage. Units employ murphy beds, built-in furniture and plush common areas to make urban living a reality for the budget conscious who might otherwise be priced out of the market. Other key features often offered, such as convenient access to public transportation and outside bike ramps with direct access to a bike storage rooms points to another benefit of urban living: walkability.

Inside a mirco loft apartment in Vancouver. Photograph courtesy of http://www.tinyhousetalk.com/wp-content/uploads/micro-loft-tiny-apartments-vancouver-02.jpg

Tapping into the trend of young professionals flocking to downtowns, micro-lofts seem to be clued into the changing lifestyle preferences of a new generation: vibrancy, activity, walkability and authenticity.

Micro-lofts in the The Arcade Providence touts the “chance  to live in one of Providence’s most notable landmarks.”

With high occupancy rates and the demand for more market-rate residential units in the core, could micro-lofts be in the future for Downtown Jacksonville’s vacant historic buildings, such as the Florida Life Building or the Bisbee Building?

Article by Katherine Hardwick at Downtown Vision. Visit Downtown Vision's blog at: http://downtownjacksonville.org/blog/2013/01/28/micro-lofts-filling-demand-for-downtown-living/

Katherine Hardwick is the director of marketing for Downtown Vision, Inc. She is tasked with strategic leadership and management of the organization's initiatives to market Downtown Jacksonville. Katherine brings eight years of marketing experience to the organization. Formerly, as marketing and events manager for DVI, Katherine doubled the average attendance of the First Wednesday Art Walk and launched a number of initiatives to streamline this signature event. Prior to joining Downtown Vision, she worked for marketing agency, Burdette Ketchum, as account coordinator on the DVI account. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Advertising from the University of North Florida and graduated with top honors. Katherine sits on the Downtown Marketing Collaborative Board and the Visit Jacksonville Marketing Committee; she is a member of the International Downtown Association and is active in the Murray Hill community.