16 Preliminary home design boards were displayed for community review and feedback on Thursday, February 27th. The designs presented were a result of the collaborative design process between the project team, local design architects, community participants, residents and DR2 applicants from the CRA and Outreach Neighborhoods; Acres Homes, Independence Heights, Near Northside, Fifth Ward, OST/ South Union, and Sunnyside. To view the designs, and learn more about the project, visit: dr2homedesign.org
On February 1st, the project team welcomed neighborhood residents, community leaders, local design architects, and city staff to Houston Housing Authority’s Neighborhood Resource Center, where they worked together to advance the housing interests of the six target communities. Over 50 participants were in attendance.
The Community Design Workshop used activities to document contextual and programmatic design preferences for Community Revitalization Areas (CRA) & Outreach Areas, and will inform schematic home designs, including floor plans and elevations. Participants at the Community Design Workshop were divided into six groups, based on CRA & Outreach Area neighborhoods (Acre Homes, Independence Heights, Near Northside, Fifth Ward, OST/South Union, and Sunnyside). Each participant was encouraged to share and debate ideas with the assumption that all ideas were welcomed.
Context - Participants identified neighborhood priorities in the following design categories - building performance, foundation, driveway, roof, porch, texture, doors, windows, and window details. Using a blackjack style card game, complete with a “wild card” option, participants drew their preferred building component and debated each option with their group.
Home Design - Participants diagramed their existing home and site layout, then designed their model home to accommodate their family’s needs, indicating programmatic adjacencies and areas of most importance within the home.
Conclusions - Each CRA & Outreach Area shared highlights from their group sessions which included three things about their neighborhood’s context and three things about their home designs to the entire Community Design Workshop group.
More information about this program can also be found at the Disaster Recovery Round 2 project website. You can now download our DR2 Design Guidebook to find out more about the six neighborhoods involved in this process.
Future events will include a follow up focus group, hosted by the project team and local design architects; and a home design Gallery Show on February 27th to present design ideas generated during the February 1st Community Design Workshop for selection.
Now in it's 6th year, bcWORKSHOP is expanding again, this time to Houston, Texas. We are still getting our feet wet down here, but we’ve already started to connect with some great organizations and people. Not only are we looking forward to meeting more, we are even more eager to be a part of a community dedicated to bringing great possibilities in this city to fruition. Our first project is a program called Disaster Recovery Round Two (DR2). With the City of Houston Housing and Community Development Department and Texas General Land Office, we are planning to play a key role in rebuilding up to 400 homes in neighborhoods damaged or destroyed during Hurricane Ike in the Fall of 2008. And because this project is our first in Houston, we see this as an opportunity to engage a wide variety of Houstonians on how to approach redevelopment with sensitivity to the local context and existing community.
Along with our project partners, Gulf Coast Community Design Studio, unabridged Architects and University of Houston Community Design Resource Center, we are tapping into the expertise of the local architecture community and the residents from six affected neighborhoods: Independence Heights, Acres Homes, Near Northside, Greater Fifth Ward, Old Spanish Trail/South Union and Sunnyside. During a working charrette, which will be held on February 1st, neighborhood leaders, potential residents, the local design architects and the project partners will discover what types of homes people want to see in their communities. The six different groups will share project information, programmatic preferences and contextual design preferences through a series of conversations and design exercises. The information gathered at this event will be highly important for the local design architects to generate preliminary schematic home designs, which will be exhibited in Gallery Show at the end of February. A celebration rather than another working session, the Gallery Show is where the communities can view the different designs, ask questions, debate and vote on their favorites. The designs with the most votes will be made available for selection by residents who are qualified through the DR2 program for construction. Construction is planned to begin in the Summer of 2014.
By bringing a diversity of community residents, design professionals and stakeholders together in the design process, we see a chance to produce a wider variety of well considered and energy efficient home designs than typically available in disaster recovery efforts. Utilizing a process where design professionals and clients can share their respective expertise will result in attractive, well functioning and livable homes. We are excited to begin this opportunity to help create homes that engender pride in not just the homeowner, but also in the whole community.
For those interested in this project, and living in the Houston area, please join us at our Gallery Show, scheduled for February 27th! Drop us a line by email at email@example.com, find us on twitter or like our facebook page to hear more details as they come. We would love to meet you and hear what potential you see in this city. We are glad to join in on dreaming about what else Houston can be!
Ryan Campbell is a native Texan with a love for people, places, and cultures. He graduated from the E. Fay Jones School of Architecture at the University of Arkansas in 2012 and is passionate about architecture and its relation to the people and communities it affects. He believes that the architecture of the past tells a story of culture and its people and that contemporary projects today should do the same. When he can, he finds the time to draw, sketch, and paint the historic places he has visited, because he is fascinated with the principles they have to teach. In 2011 he received a grant fellowship to study the architecture of the southwestern United States in an effort to reinterpret the lessons of the past for today. In 2012 he was a part of a design-build project of a modern home in downtown Little Rock, AR. He has also spent time in Mexico and Africa studying existing urban relationships related to housing. Unrelated to architecture, Ryan loves life, spending time with his family, reading, hiking, camping, and climbing.