Infill. If you live in a locally designated historic district, today’s Building Language term should be a familiar friend. In preservation, infill describes new construction that remains sensitive in design to the surrounding historic buildings. Locally designated historic districts, including those in Indianapolis, typically review the designs of new construction to ensure they remain compatible to the design and character of the neighborhood.
In the Old Northside neighborhood, I’ve found several examples of infill construction that show the variety of new construction that fits within this historic neighborhood. But, as a reminder of the wonderful architecture found within the Old Northside…
…and then, the infill designs found in the Old Northside. Our first example is a brick residence located in the 1200 Block of North Park Avenue. This residence is located directly across the street from the Morris-Butler House. Even without a trained eye, you can tell this residence is not a historic building. However, it maintains a similar size and form to buildings in the neighborhood.Our second example is found on the 1500 Block of North Alabama Street. Looking at nearby residences, you can tell the infill matches the size and form of the neighboring residences. However, the small square windows indicate the contemporary nature of this residence.
Add it to your vocabulary – how might one use today’s Building Language term in their everyday life?
Several empty lots in the neighborhood would be a great location for infill housing.
The infill process appears to be working well to maintain the scale and design factors that made neighborhoods that are now historic unique neighborhoods. If the City insists on pushing demolitions, maybe they adopt an infill policy like this?
The house referenced in the 1400 Block of Alabama is actually 1408 N. Alabama and was built in 1889 constructed by Frank S. Foster an attorney and real estate dealer for his residence. Redevelopment group did a wonderful job of renovating it a few years ago. This was not an infill house. The west side of the 1400 Block of Alabama was one of the few blocks that had no loss of historic homes until the July 4th Fire in the late 1970’s that burnt down two houses. On those lots, 1428 and 1436 the large infill house was built.
Rick : Thanks for the clarification. I thought it was an excellent example of infill, but in fact, it’s tricked me with its size and form of an original structure with contemporary features.