Urban Tents
Steel House
415 Core Studio Winter 2008
Instructor: Mark Mack

The objective of this studio was to gain a comprehensive understanding of the components that make up a realized work of architecture, while at the same time pushing the parameters of design and technology. Using the southern California steel house, and in particular the Case Study house, as a point of departure, students sought to emulate the higher aspirations of historic projects while considering contemporary cultural, economical, environmental, and technological challenges.

Like the Case Study houses, my project maximizes steel’s capacity to produce wide, open spans that allow significant light to enter a structure. As an innovative measure to control heat gain, I applied a secondary tent skin that can be rolled up or down over a glass and Polygal surface. The layered envelope not only serves a pragmatic function, but it also creates an atmosphere of varying levels of translucency. I detailed the envelope in order to understand how the skins and steel construction elements join.

View of the main living area

View of the entry

Model of main and guest houses

Model axonometric and detail

Ground floor plan

Second floor plan

Long section

Short section

Wall section and details