* The BSB Design Blog.
Just Damn Good Architecture

Infill Rental Development Opens Up Inner Suburb Alternative to Inner City Living

An inner (sometimes known as a “first-ring”) suburb is a suburban community generally located close to the center or central business district (CBD) of a large city.

“Developing a rental housing community in an inner suburb with a robust infrastructure provides an alternative for those who prefer plenty of nearby conveniences and shorter commutes, but don’t want to or can’t afford to live in a large city.”Joe A. Safin, AIA – BSB Design Senior Partner, Chicago

Focus Dev - The Reserve Train Station with Train

Train stop near ‘The Reserve’ apartments, Glenview, IL.

According to the 2015 National Community and Transportation Preference Survey, Millennials prefer living in attached housing, living within walking distance of shops and restaurants, and having a short commute. They are also the most likely age group to make use of public transportation.

Infill can provide ‘the place’ to build a highly-sought rental community

“In the United States, inner suburbs are the older, more populous communities of a metropolitan area that experienced urban sprawl before the Post–World War II baby boom.” – Wikipedia.  Rental housing is scarce in these areas and so is available land.

A vacant, run-down or under-utilized infill lot can be developed into a desirable, modern, new rental community rarely found in a ‘first-ring’ suburb.

6.3-acre infill lot in Glenview, IL, less than 20 miles outside of Chicago.

6.3-acre infill lot in Glenview, IL, less than 20 miles outside of Chicago.

CASE STUDY: FOCUS DEVELOPMENT’S ‘THE RESERVE’ IN GLENVIEW

infill complete_glenview_arial‘The Reserve’ by Focus Development, Inc., is an infill rental housing community that opened June 2015 in Glenview, an inner suburb of Chicago less than 20 miles from the city.

“The Reserve Glenview provides the ultimate location. Getting to downtown Chicago and the surrounding areas has never been easier, with close proximity to I-94 and I-294 and private access to the Golf Metra station. Next door the Glen Gate Center features Mariano’s Fresh Market and other specialty shops. Spend your day at Old Orchard Mall, downtown Glenview, or The Glen. Come home to The Reserve and experience the very best the North Shore has to offer.”  – The Reserve, Glenview website

BSB Design was the land planner, architect and landscape architect for this multifamily housing community developed on a 6.3-acre infill lot with 37.8 units/acre density.

The Reserve at GlenviewA Unique Balance between Urban and Suburban living

‘The Reserve’ strikes a unique balance between urban sophistication and suburban comfort. The three-story design wraps around a centralized parking garage for ample parking but has the exterior charm and quaintness of a suburban residential home.

The community also features a high-end clubhouse and other amenities found in new downtown urban developments but has numerous exterior park spaces that add to the renters’ experience.

Slide show: A Look at ‘The Reserve’ in Glenview, Illinois


‘The Reserve’ was also awarded Silver LEED Certification by the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI®) on November 2, 2015.

‘The Reserve’ Green Attributes Include:

  • LEED Silver Certification
  • NGBS Buildings Standard Certification
  • Ultra-High Efficiency HVAC Units (seer 14)
  • Energy Star Appliances
  • Energy Efficient Lighting
  • Energy Efficient low-e Windows
  • Energy Efficient Insulation
  • Low Voc-Emitting Finishes
  • On-Site Recycling Program
  • Remotely Controlled Thermostats
  • Bicycle Storage
  • Easy Access to Metra

*LEED, or Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, is a green building certification program that recognizes best-in-class building strategies and practices. To receive LEED certification, building projects satisfy prerequisites and earn points to achieve different levels of certification.

UP