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Row House

Our menu reflects the rich history of our neighborhood Wharf, the place for seafood and prime rib houses in Old D.C. Enjoy a diverse menu with favorites like ribeye steak, shrimp tacos, and freshly harvested oysters from the Chesapeake Bay. Enjoy a true taste of history.

row house

In architecture and city planning, a terrace or terraced house (UK) or townhouse (US)[a] is a form of medium-density housing that originated in Europe in the 16th century, whereby a row of attached dwellings share side walls. In the United States and Canada they are also known as row houses or row homes, found in older cities such as Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Toronto.

Though earlier Gothic ecclesiastical examples, such as Vicars' Close, Wells, are known, the practice of building new domestic homes uniformly to the property line really began in the 16th century following Dutch and Belgian models and became known in English as "row" houses. For example, in "Yarmouth Rows", Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, the building fronts uniformly ran right to the property line.

The term terrace was borrowed from garden terraces by British architects of the late Georgian period to describe streets of houses whose uniform fronts and uniform height created an ensemble that was more stylish than a "row". Townhouses (or townhomes) are generally two- to three-story structures that share a wall with a neighbouring unit. As opposed to apartment buildings, townhouses do not have neighbouring units above or below them. They are similar in concept to row houses or terraced houses except they are usually divided into smaller groupings of homes. The first and last of the houses is called an end terrace and is often a different layout from the houses in the middle, sometimes called mid-terrace.

In Australia, the term "terrace house" refers almost exclusively to Victorian and Edwardian era terraces or replicas almost always found in the older, inner city areas of the major cities. Terraced housing was introduced to Australia from Britain in the nineteenth century, basing their architecture on those in the UK, France and Italy.[2]

Large numbers of terraced houses were built in the inner suburbs of large Australian cities, particularly Sydney and Melbourne, mainly between the 1850s and the 1890s (terraced housing is rare outside of these cities). Detached housing became the popular style of housing in Australia following Federation in 1901. The most common building material used was brick, often covered with cement render and then painted.

In recent decades these inner-city areas and their terraced houses have been gentrified. The suburbs in which terrace houses are often found are often sought after in Australia due to their proximity to the Central Business Districts of the major cities. They are therefore sometimes quite expensive even though they may not be the preferred accommodation style. The lack of windows on the side, the small gardens, and the relative darkness of the rooms is at odds with the design favoured for modern Australian homes.[3]

In Finland, an agrarian country where urbanism was a generally late phenomenon, the rivitalo (literally: row house) has not been seen as a particularly urban house type. What is regarded as the first terraced house to be built, Ribbingshof (1916), in the new Helsinki suburb of Kulosaari was designed by renowned architect Armas Lindgren, and was inspired by ideas from the English Garden City movement and Hampstead Garden Suburb, and was seen as a relatively low density residential area. A similarly leafy suburban street of terraced houses was that of Hollantilaisentie (1920) in the suburb of Munkkiniemi, Helsinki, designed by architect Eliel Saarinen. They were initially envisioned as workers' housing, as part of a grand new urban scheme for the entirety of north-west Helsinki, but from the outset became a fashionable middle-class residential area. Later terraced housing in Finland is similarly associated with suburban middle-class living, such as the Tapiola garden city, Espoo, from the 1950s.[4]

The first streets of houses with uniform fronts were built by the Huguenot entrepreneur Nicholas Barbon in the rebuilding after the Great Fire of London. Fashionable terraces appeared in London's Grosvenor Square from 1727 onwards and in Bath's Queen Square from 1729 onwards.[5] The Scottish architect Robert Adam is credited with the development of the house itself.[6] Early terraces were also built by the two John Woods in Bath and under the direction of John Nash in Regent's Park, London. The term was picked up by speculative builders like Thomas Cubitt and soon became commonplace.

It is far from being the case that terraced houses were only built for people of limited means. This is especially true in London, where some of the wealthiest people in the country owned them in locations such as Belgrave Square and Carlton House Terrace. These townhouses, in the British sense, were the London residences of noble and gentry families who spent most of the year in their country houses. These terraced houses, often surrounding a garden square, are hallmarks of Georgian architecture. The same was true of many British and Irish cities. In Dublin, Georgian squares such as Merrion Square and Fitzwilliam Square housed the city's upper classes. A type of terraced house known latterly as the "one-floor-over-basement" was a style of terraced house particular to the Irish capital. They were built in the Victorian era for the city's lower middle class and emulated upper class townhouses.[7]

By the early Victorian period, a terrace had come to designate any style of housing where individual houses repeating one design are joined into rows. The style was used for workers' housing in industrial districts during the rapid urbanisation following the industrial revolution, particularly in the houses built for workers of the expanding textile industry. The terrace style spread widely across the country, and was the usual form of high-density residential housing up to World War II. The 19th century need for expressive individuality inspired variation of façade details and floor-plans reversed with those of each neighbouring pair, to offer variety within the standardised format.[8]

A major distinction is between through terraces, whose houses have both a front and a back door, and back-to-backs, which are bricked in on three sides. The 1875 Public Health Act imposed a duty on local authorities to regulate housing by the use of byelaws, and subsequently all byelaw terraced housing was required to have its own privy, with rear access to allow the night soil to be collected as per the Rochdale system. As recently as 2011, byelaw terraced houses made up over 15% of the United Kingdom's housing stock.[9]

Since the Second World War, housing redevelopment has led to many outdated or dilapidated terraces being cleared to make room for tower blocks, which occupy a much smaller area of land. Because of this land use in the inner city areas could in theory have been used to create greater accessibility, employment or recreational or leisure centres. However, sub-optimal or flawed implementation has meant that in many areas (like Manchester or the London estates) the tower blocks offered no real improvement for rehoused residents over their prior terraced houses.[8]

In 2005 the English Heritage report Low Demand Housing and the Historic Environment found that repairing a standard Victorian terraced house over 30 years is around 60% cheaper than building and maintaining a newly built house. In a 2003 survey for Heritage Counts a team of experts contrasted a Victorian terrace with a house built after 1980, and found that:

The research demonstrated that, contrary to earlier thinking, older housing actually costs less to maintain and occupy over the long-term life of the dwelling than more modern housing. Largely due to the quality and life-span of the materials used, the Victorian terraced house proved almost 1,000 per 100 m2 cheaper to maintain and inhabit on average each year.

Halifax's use of rowhouses, townhouses and terraced housing has been consistent throughout its history, particularly on the Peninsula where the city first began settlement. In the older sections of the city are sections of terraced housing used historically for military families, as part of established families' real estate holdings in addition to a country house, and as dwellings for the working classes of the city and as public housing. The most well-known of the terraced housing areas is The Hydrostone, which was originally built as replacement housing stock for those made homeless after the Halifax Explosion; individual owners have, however, altered the exteriors of many of the rowhouses over time to accommodate changing family needs. More recently, there have been rowhouse developments appearing in diverse areas throughout the city.

Montreal has the largest stock of terraced houses in Canada[10] and they are typical in all areas of the city. As is common in other North American cities, in Montreal row houses are often referred to as townhouses.

The streetscape of the city's 19th century neighbourhoods, such as the Plateau, Centre-Sud, and Hochelaga, are dominated by row houses, duplexes and triplexes. Row houses continued to be built throughout the 20th century. In many neighbourhoods, such as Villeray, Parc Extension, and Ville-Émard, they became the dominant form of housing during the post-war period.

In the 21st century, Montreal has continued to build row houses at a high rate, with 62% of housing starts in the metropolitan area being apartment or row units.[10] Apartment complexes, high-rises, and semi-detached homes are less popular in Montreal when compared to large Canadian cities like Toronto or Vancouver but similar to some US cities, in particular Philadelphia. Montreal's characteristic row houses and their iconic alleyways, balconies, and outdoor staircases have become cultural symbols of the city, featured in David Fennario's Balconville and Mordecai Richler's The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz. 041b061a72

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