Thursday, March 13, 2014

Modern Farm Series

Edging closer to my seventh year living in the Longhouse, I've now begun my own design practice within these four walls. It's inspired broader thoughts about how to expand the singular form of the Longhouse. There are typically two approaches architects take when adding to existing structures. One is to treat the addition as separate and distinct, the other is to integrate it in an additive way. My preference tends toward the first. It appeals to my design sensibilities as it's just a simpler treatment.

30X40 Design Workshop : Farm Series
Enter the Modern Farm Series by my (relatively new) studio, 30X40 Design Workshop. This series of modern home plans draws inspiration from the classic farmstead. Linked outbuildings were common in farms which were added to over time as the needs of the farm changed. Main houses were connected to barns with structures termed ‘little houses’ and ‘back houses’. The buildings were each carefully positioned in the landscape and near each other so as to shelter against the local prevailing winds, to collect sunlight, and temper the climate surrounding their everyday chores.

I'm still gravitating toward long, thin building volumes as they maximize the amount of light available to the living spaces and I just prefer the way they look proportionally. However, the morphology of the plan has changed a bit now it's more focused on a pod concept each of which contains a single function - living, sleeping and specialty pods. The pods are separated physically, but linked together with a flat roofed volume containing service spaces (hallway, bath, closets + storage). By separating into pods, the plans can create private retreats within a small plan footprint. They're also free to adapt to different site conditions, shifting topography, solar orientation, etc. I've developed a few basic layouts and continue to push this further each week.

I've posted an introductory video on my studio's website...please stay tuned as I'll be releasing the plans throughout the Spring of 2014.

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