Residential Design

VOL.2 2018

A business-to-business magazine focused on the collaborative process and talented work of residential architects and custom homebuilders.

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Page 28 of 75

A House for the 21st Century A STUDENT COMPETITION ENVISIONS THE HOUSE OF THE FUTURE Lately, the news is filled with stories of natural disasters and their impact on our homes and our lives: hurricanes and droughts, fires and floods have each had an impact on some, or many, regions of the country. CRAN itself faced this issue when its symposium, planned for Miami this past September, was canceled due to a hurricane. More than ever before, our national conscience is focused upon the struggle between humans and the natural world. Similarly, the recent Great Recession brought to the fore an equal but less physically obvious upheaval in our economy and social structures: the way we interact, work, and live. How do we, as architects, face these struggles? How do we seek to reduce the impact of the built environment on the natural world, and simultane- ously, the impact of a seemingly angry natural environment on our structures? How do we enhance community, build economic opportunity and, in short, make life better for all our futures? These are weighty issues that challenge the most experienced of us. We have greater knowledge, and greater technical ability to address the problems facing us, but little has changed in our approach to homebuilding. This lies at the core of the task presented to architectural students in a competition sponsored by AIA CRAN in conjunction with the ACSA (Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture) for the 2016 to 2017 school year. Titled "HERE+NOW: A House for the 21st Century," the competition asked students to design a house that is "informed by context, culture, and vernacular, but fully embracing 21st century technology and ideas of domesticity." The design, it stated, should reflect "an innovative, creative, environmentally responsible, and culturally sensitive ap- proach to issues of domesticity." Simple. The broad scope of this design challenge was furthered by an open program: "There is no maximum or minimum square footage requirement for any program area or the combined programs of the house. Students are encouraged to explore creative/innovative approaches to programmatic arrangement and distribution. Space allocation should be appropriate to the design proposal and the needs of the client." A few basic parameters were established—enough to define the project as a house: sleeping areas (not so limiting a name as "bed- rooms"), at least one bathroom, a kitchen, living area, etc. As for site, any site would do, real or imagined, but the par- Above: Jesse Bird's Upper Squamish Research and Residence took first place in the competition. Image: Courtesy Carleton University 29 VOL. 2, 2018 RESIDENTIALDESIGNMAGA ZINE.COM AIA CRAN

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