Ocean View Lofts Courtyard. Photo by Dixi Carrillo


Michael Feiner, Nancy Feiner,

& Herb Schreier

Site Area

25,000 sf

Built Area

20,000 sf

Built Area

14 Live-Work  Condominiums

Project Costs

$4.0 million

Project Completed

October 1993

Design Features

  • Pioneering project mediates between residential and industrial uses
  • Contextual design in a historic neighborhood
  • Courtyard and fountain are a natural meeting place for residents
  • Mixture of artists, home office workers and some commuters
  • Two accessible units, one work/live unit

A Live-Work Courtyard Community Adjacent to  Berkeley’s  Fourth Street Neighborhood

Located in a neighborhood within walking distance of the Fourth Street District in Berkeley, Ocean View Lofts sit at the meeting point of a commercial and residential neighborhood. Virtually all of the units open onto a generous courtyard containing a combination planter, fountain and reflecting pool, where interaction between residents occurs at all times of the day as they come and go about their lives. Softer materials such as wood beam ceilings and pine floor mezzanines lend the interior spaces a more residential character than other more industrial live-work spaces. Similarly, the front elevation of the building was strongly influenced by the residential architecture of the neighborhood and a rigorous design review and community outreach process.

Ocean View Lofts was originally designed as a larger project that extended from street to street in this gridded neighborhood. Due to NIMBY pressures, the original design for 30 units was reduced to 14 plus three on an adjacent site. Several units that had been designed as three-level flexhouses  with internal connections between downstairs living space and upstairs living space were sold as separate units; in rare instances, a buyer purchased both upstairs and downstairs portions, thereby returning to the intent of the original flexhouse design.

Project Type: Live-Work Courtyard Communities / Townhouses, Mews, Compounds and Flexhouse / Transit-Oriented Urban Infill

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