Category Archives: On the Boards

MacArthur Annex: Our Mixed-Use Container Community in the News

We have been working for some time on the MacArthur Annex project which is now under construction. It is a mixed-use container project that acts as an open architectural framework for a local community. The occupants will range from artists and craftsmen to professionals and small businesses. Included in the mix are a local coffee shop and a new beer garden brought to you by Farm League Design & Management Group, the team who recently launched Drake’s Dealership in Uptown Oakland. We look forward to a bustling space filled with art, work, food and drink.
Read more about the project on SF Gate.
Container Project
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Baran Studio at Oakland Structures

Our DA4 project made an appearance at the Oakland Structures event last Friday. The event is held annually, and centers around current projects that are “shaping Oakland”. In addition, our client City Ventures was recently featured in the San Francisco Business Times regarding their investments in West Oakland, of which our project is a part. We are very excited to be working with City Ventures on these formative Oakland projects.


Unified Volumes


The studio recently did a design session to generate different ideas for a new project that will explore greater density in infill housing. Instead of designing for four units with small backyards, the studio looked at the lot and imagined situating six units, each with 25′ x 25′ sq ft. footprints. Each one would provide for an office and garage space on the ground level, with an open living space as the primary use of the second, while the most private spheres would be located on the third. Given the densification, rooftop spaces, which have become more and more trendy (especially in places like L.A., but also in San Francisco), seemed optimal as well. In this case, the lot would require a row of three units in the front along the street and a row of three in the back.

The trick and task of each design was to achieve a plan that started with a larger ground level space, while the second level floor plate could be smaller but carved out to provide additional open space in exchange – achieved potentially as a cantilevered extension, or some sort of inset space that would push out elsewhere in the rear. The studio wanted to devise ways of facilitating ideal circulations within these precise spatial parameters.


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Also posted in Academic, Design, Theory Tagged , |

Permanent Press

Exciting News! We were published on SF Gate this week, and the print version will appear in the San Francisco Chronicle Home and Garden Section on Sunday:

Also posted in Construction, Design, Projects

San Francisco Offices

Design for new offices coming to San Francisco:


53rd Street Apartments

Design for new apartments coming to 53rd Street:


Also posted in Design, Projects

On the Boards: 55th Street

C:UsersmbaranDocuments1019 55Tth N-unit_20130403_twg.pdf


C:UsersmbaranDocuments1019 55Tth N-unit_20130403_twg.pdf 

This design works to achieve privacy and intimacy while still connecting to it’s dense urban environment.  The wall at the front will screen the neighborhood, but the volume set atop will be eroded to open outwards.  Each element is delineated to break down scale, and subtractions have been made to carve out open space.  The resultant volumes will be further cut, connecting to the gardens and yard…

Also posted in Design