TCA Architects Takes SoCal Community into the Wild

The design of Wermers Properties’ 601-unit community draws inspiration from the adjacent Santa Ana Zoo and Prentice Park.
Rendering of Santa Ana First Street Apartments

Rendering of Santa Ana First Street Apartments

Santa Ana, Calif.—TCA Architects has drawn inspiration from the nearby zoo and Prentice Park to design Santa Ana First Street Apartments, a residential mixed-use project announced earlier this year. Wermers Properties plans on bringing 601 new apartment homes and 18,500 square feet of commercial space to 1660 E. First St. by 2020.

“The design for Santa Ana First Street Apartments is inspired by how we inhabit and explore the natural realm. The community will connect with the Prentice Park neighborhood through the creation of private and public spaces. Natural wildlife elements seamlessly interact with the architecture, and the expansive use of natural materials throughout the apartment community create an intriguing and unique conservatory-like atmosphere,” said Michael Mindlin, principal and studio director with TCA Architects, in prepared remarks.

Rendering of Santa Ana First Street Apartments

Rendering of Santa Ana First Street Apartments

The project will feature pedestrian green spaces between commercial, dining and recreational options, that create an engaging community for residents by combining textures, sounds and zoo animals with contemporary residential living. The design features large windows and perches to allow residents to watch the animals and nature at the zoo. The project’s entrance at the intersection of First Street and Elk Lane will be dominated by a grand, multi-story glass lantern with verdant living walls that will be surrounded by commercial space.

Property amenities will include two pools, two fitness centers, a yoga room, a resident club house cabana, an art gallery, resident lounge, and multiple outdoor BBQs and gathering spaces. Located at First Street and Elk Lane, the community is just off I-10 and Route 101.

Renderings courtesy of TCA Architects