Tourmaline Urban Lofts


Tourmaline Urban Lofts is a residential “pocket community” of fifteen townhomes in the heart of the Market District of Bentonville, Arkansas. Inspired by elements of the Ozarks, Tourmaline Urban Lofts is an echo of Arkansas through its use of shapes, colors, and materials, along with patterns derived from the crystalline structure of the gemstone tourmaline.

Project Statement

Project Statement

Tourmaline Urban Lofts is a grouping of five triplexes of two and three-story townhomes, approximately 2,000 sf in size. The buildings are clustered around a lush landscaped Commons. Public Art featured in the middle of the Commons is a large rusted steel sculpture called “Autumn Leaves”, which pays tribute to the beautiful trees of Northwest Arkansas. An edible landscape filled with native fruit and nut trees, strawberries, blueberries, and figs acknowledges the culinary prominence of Bentonville’s Market District. The buildings are simple in form and draw from elements of the Ozark Vernacular: shed roofs, rusted corten steel, corrugated awnings and gray board and batten siding. Unique is the loft-like appearance with its large expanse of windows and vaulted double height ceiling. The tall slender shape of the townhomes is inspired by the elongated mineral structure of the gemstone tourmaline and the corten steel perforated panels on each building mimic the molecular structure of this crystal. The pattern was eroded to create a delicate lacey screen that casts a dramatic shadow onto the façade. Each panel is distinct and no two are the same.
The Lofts are spacious and expansive. The main living area is a large open floor plan with living, dining, and kitchen combined. The living room has a vaulted double height ceiling while 10’ and 9’ foot ceilings are used throughout the secondary areas to create volume. Each townhome consists of 3 bedrooms, 2 ½ baths, laundry and parking for 2 cars. They are all electric with EnergyStar® rated appliances. Ductless mini-splits provide heating and cooling. Sustainable materials such as fiberglass windows, bamboo flooring, quartz countertops and low-VOC paint are also implemented in the design. Clean, contemporary interiors express simplicity and elegance. Back-painted glass is used on the back wall of the kitchen capturing and reflecting the exterior light and landscape through the big living room window. These reflections bring nature indoors. Each unit has a private front terrace that connects to the common area and a private courtyard. The 3-Story Model incorporates balconies and a covered veranda for additional private space.
Tourmaline Urban Lofts creates connectivity. It is a front porch community where people live and gather together: a pocket utopia within the burgeoning Market District of Bentonville with all its cultural and culinary offerings.

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