St. Joseph Condominiums

861 Carondelet St.

New Orleans, Louisiana

Historic, three-story townhouses respectfully renovated and two new structures introduced in the conversion of a former office building at 861 Carondelet to the St. Joseph Condominiums.
Elie Khoury, KFK Development, client
37,558 sf

Wayne Troyer FAIA

Sarah Forrest

Irene Keil



Project Type: Housing, Mixed Use

Originally townhouses, then an auto dealership, and later an office building, the structure at 861 Carondelet has experienced substantial modification. With the St. Joseph Condominiums, the historic, three-story townhouses are respectfully renovated and two new structures are introduced. The combined task of renovation and new construction offered the challenge of maintaining the historical integrity of an existing structure while contributing to the richness  of the architectural fabric of the city.

The new insertions are bold, yet sensitive towards the historic context of the immediate area. The new pool pavilion in the courtyard of the complex [invisible from the exterior], is composed of translucent polycarbonate which allows transmittal of light while maintaining privacy. During the evening hours, this graceful structure glows with an internal illumination. It faces what was once a party wall of the previous structure; an artifact left as a reminder of the building’s history. A copper-clad penthouse sits atop the newly renovated corner building, invisible from the immediate street level, yet striking from blocks away. The copper sheeting has developed a patina over time, reflecting the passing of time also represented by the artifact-wall in the courtyard. The design concepts for the penthouse explore possible ways of responding to historic context, not by reproducing what already exists, but through interpretive and innovative use of materials, forms, and proportions.