Against the Mountain

Vertical Design Studio | Fall 2015
Multi-generational Home | Boulder, Colorado
The University of Texas at Austin
Professor: David Heymann 

A multi-generational home, poured into the land, establishes the new American homestead. An anchor in the landscape, it allows the family to observe the world outside.

The design explores the idea of a foundation formed by topography, poured against the uphill condition, expanding out from the interior living spaces. As the foundation meets the sloping ground, it creates a datum of man’s imposition against the land, forming a stage on which nature plays out; snow collects and melts, puddles form and evaporate, ever-changing the amount of outdoor space available for use.

The house is thin and elongated, one room and a corridor deep, visually connecting all rooms to the site. Bedrooms and communal spaces open out onto the foundation, pushing its inhabitants to circulate outdoors.

The Client. The Location. The Site.

These three elements form the sides of a triangle in the design of a house. Each impacts the other two. All three when working cohesively lead to the successful design of a home. This logic was the sole guiding instruction of this studio, as the client, location and site were self-determined.

Following early study models examining the idea of a foundation poured against the land, with the design running parellel with the contours, I investigated the ideal uphill condition for the design through a series of study models, shown here.