artist co-op - kansas city, missouri
Context: The proposed housing prototype exemplifies how a componentized building can play a vital role in a neighborhood’s renaissance. Based on a kit of premanufactured parts, the building mediates between the street and the sculpture park, creating visually connections between the two sides and defining their edges with an ever-changing façade of folding screen panels that provide various levels of privacy and serve as a protective layer against the sun and strong winds. The height of the building responds to the context, as does its materiality: the warm colors of the woods and weathering steel complement the area’s brick buildings and proudly echo the industrial past of the neighborhood.
Modular Construction: The off-site fabrication of all major building components creates a simple system that reduces waste and construction time and facilitates a highly flexible framework for different types of dwelling units. Precast concrete panels with integral plumbing chases support a system of engineered wood beams, forming the building’s primary structural skeleton that accepts the pre-assembled sandwiched floor/ceiling panels with an integral electrical grid for in-floor receptacles and ceiling light fixtures. Selecting from a palette of prefabricated exterior infill panels and based on the unit plan, an occupant can chose the degree of transparency of the individual unit.
Green Building: Sustainability was paramount in the design of the housing prototype. Most of the premanufactured components can be made of recycled or recyclable materials. A green roof will reduce stormwater runoff, eliminate heat islands, and increase the roof’s insulation value. High-efficiency glass and the use of high-efficiency foam insulation in sandwiched floor and wall panels will decrease hating and cooling needs. The folding screen panels made of perforated steel function as a climate buffer, providing shade during the summer and reducing the impact of string winds in the winter.
Unit Flexibility: The layout of the dwelling unit depends on the occupant’s lifestyle. We are showing two plan versions as typical examples. The first unit includes one bedroom and a studio, with a double-height space over the living room; the second has two bedrooms. A powder room may be added on the main level, as long as it plugs into one of the plumbing chases integral to the concrete wall panels. All units feature a garage with transparent or translucent overhead doors on both sides, illuminating the street and park at night and allowing for natural light and street exposure when used as an artist studio or business.