Friday, July 22, 2011

0751 RS House - now direct from us

When we first started offering the RS House as a house plan it was not here on our own catalog. Why? In many ways the house is inconsistent with our other house designs. Its a very specific design solution created for an individual client. It was not designed to be a product as are the rest of our designs.

At the outset I just felt that this made the house too different from the other designs and I decided to offer it through other house plan vendors instead. After a couple of years of this we've reconsidered. The truth is we think we can do a better job marketing this house than any other vendor. And I think we have more followers interested in this kind of house than any other vendor. So we are making a place for it here in our catalog. You can now find its own catalog page.

The house is still very different from the other offerings, and because it originated as a custom commission we've made a special collection for designs like this. We are calling it LamiDesign+, jumping on the + bandwagon with Googles' new social media site. The meaning is that the genesis of these designs is something more than our other Collections. They represent the outcome of an intensive design process with one of our individual clients. As such these house designs will be a product of that collaborative process. So these are not just LamiDesign houses, they are LamiDesign+.

Another stark difference from the rest of our plan offerings is the pricing. Because the development cost of these house plans has been paid for we can offer them at a much reduced pricing. Any house design you will see available here will be offered with the full consent and cooperation of my client for whom the original house was designed. In each case I will be entering a pay-back arrangement with these clients, so that sales of the plan will off-set their investment in design services, with the ultimate goal being a complete reimbursement. I think this is a completely unique proposition in the world of house plans, and for that matter in architectural practice. Its intended as incentive for people to invest in design, to build better designed houses, and to encourage the results of that investment to be used to further spread good design. I think its a tremendous win-win, and the latest innovation we are bringing to the house plan industry.

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Thursday, July 21, 2011

0751 RS House - Photography of the finished house.

We long ago promised fresh pictures of this house when spring came and the trees leafed out. Well the trees did their part, and we did return to take more photos towards the end of June.

I was joined by my friend, photographer Glenn Hudson. Glenn is an amazing nature photographer and portrait shooter, but he was keen to shoot the house. Unlike most staged architectural photographs you'll find his shots of the house have a natural feeling - not a propped and dressed magazine shot. We like this. Houses are for real life, not for magazine shots. So enjoy these, and enjoy more of Glenn's photography on his flickr site.

The sky was overcast that day, but it actually made for an even north light on all sides of the house. Good for seeing what the house looks like, if not for a dramatic shot of the sky. After the link below you'll find more photos from our visit in June 2011.

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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

West Chester Leed House - new local build

This new home project from my local practice may be the first project to use a variation on the USA New Wall. But even if it does not we are vetting a number of interesting tech here and it should be fun to watch.

This is not a modern styled house, so no eye candy for our modern house following, but there will be lots of interesting tech and well worth watching the build. Even though the house has a craftsman style feel to the exterior, the floor plan is very modern, open plan, to accommodate contemporary living. And as the name suggests it will be Leed Certified.

This house is utilizing Superior Walls, a precast, and pre insulated basement wall product. This allowed the basement to be installed in one day - no concrete formwork and much abbreviated prep time. Rather than a conventional footing and fragile, relatively speaking, basement wall, the precast wall is very strong and stiff and only requires a stone bed beneath it. This stone bed spreads the load out to meet the undisturbed soil at with a load pressure within its bearing capacity, and this is how it precludes conventional footings.

We are encouraging the use of Mineral Wool in a USA New Wall Better Wall configuration. It may instead use foam and blown in cellulose, but still in the Better Wall configuration. In case you are curious this will not be using Swedish Platform framing, rather conventional western platform framing is being used. But the Better Wall configuration with an exterior insulation layer does improve the thermal bridges inherent in western platform frame.

Our client Intersect Homes is the owner/builder of this project, so we have a build dedicated to building green. Slide show below after the jump to get more of a feel for this project as it starts.

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