#TBT to some early design studies for Siena at St. Clair, now a major mixed-use development at the corner of Fort Couch Road and Route 19. There are several reasons we don’t see much Mediterranean architecture in Pittsburgh. For starters, tile roofs and stucco exteriors don’t fare well in our climate. However, our design philosophy is to always start with a clear creative concept; solutions to engineering and material challenges can be found later. The concept for Siena was inspired by the traditional architecture of Italy’s San Gimignano region, where family homes had towers.
Aside from working outside of our usual modern aesthetic, Siena pushed us to create a cohesive design language that could apply to commercial, single-family and multi-unit products, so that it felt like a true branded destination with a clear design concept.
The final design vision evolved for a number of reasons, including costs and other logistical challenges, but many of our early ideas carried through, and the spirit of Siena remains distinctly Italianette.