44 Church Lane
The Town of Westport like many affluent suburbs struggles to maintain its small-town character while fostering vibrant commercial centers. Our architectural aspirations of creating place and furthering commercial viability of structures often overlap into town planning. As such we were able to demonstrate to planning and Zoning the benefits of changing the zone of this residential archetype to a more commercially friendly zone would actually enhance the pedestrian character of the downtown and strengthen the buffer between commercial and residential districts. This zone change also opened up the leasing potential for what was otherwise a restrictive building type.
The building itself also needed to be taken across the goal line of transition. Originally a neighborhood house with an added attached garage it had long ago been absorbed into the commercial center of the town and converted to serve as a retail use. Guided by the same pedestrian focused principles we lowered the entire first floor to the ground achieving better accessibility and taller patron space that in good weather can spill out onto the sidewalk serving as an invitation to passers by.