House 334

DesignerCraig McMahon Architects, Inc.
PrizeHonorable Mention
Project LinkView
Entry Description

Program: 2,200 s.f. Main home w/220 s.f detached Studio and Detached Garage Lot Size: 50 x 150 Location: Alamo Heights, Texas The 2200 s.f. home is for a family of three. The property was purchased for a downsizing experiment and Design/Build opportunity to explore a different way of living on the smaller 50’ wide lots found in the area. Being Frustrated with overbuilt newer homes on similar properties, the Design goal was to create a compact open home with interconnected outdoor living spaces to show how a family can comfortably live on a compact site without sacrificing space or quality. The existing 1200 s.f. one story existing home included mature oak trees and impressive 20’ tall bamboo trees. During research, it was found that the original structure had been a prototype for residential concrete construction by a local experimental builder during the 50’s. Upon demolition, The original home was found to be completely constructed of concrete. The design focused on respecting the natural material and history of the original materials. As the shape of the existing home worked well for the public spaces- the Bedroom Addition followed with a careful harmonious connection to respect to the original homes scale and concrete character. All spaces were sized to respect the balance of use/need and to allow for a direct outside connection. Every inch of the home utilized for necessary space- including built in storage rather than dedicated closets. For the outdoors, the zoning required a rear detached Garage, which was utilized to frame the backyard in order to salvage the limited yard space. The typical concrete driveway was replaced with drivable gravel to ground the pavilion addition. To increase the usability of the property, a roof top dining deck was created over the garage.

About Designer

After twenty years working for large firms across the Country designing large scale commercial projects, I found myself leaning toward the artistry and hands-on experience of owning a South Texas firm focused on the creative aspect of design and construction. I enjoy the process of creating and crafting an environment where my clients grow, learn, live and work. My team closely collaborates on each project and this spirit of collaboration extends to our clients, local artisans, craftspeople, subcontractors and others working on the Project- whatever the Scale or Type. We bring everyone together early in the design process and value all input. Where possible, the landscape becomes our primary collaborator. We visit sites frequently during design to get a feel for the best building location. All of our Projects allow clients to enjoy year-round outdoor living and working environments. We generate private courtyards by framing spaces with building elements allowing for as important of an outdoor space as indoor. Our Commercial endeavors engage the same process always searching for a unique and creative response to the need. Bringing exterior materials indoors—stone, wood and steel-and filling rooms with daylight are just two ways we do this in each project. We also value the art of traditional building methods by mixing them with innovative techniques, applications and technology. The mission at Craig McMahon Architects is to think holistically about the project from the beginning of design through to the last detail. We improve our clients' quality of life by delivering artfully crafted projects and unique living and working environments. We are passionate about our work and enjoy developing ideas into exciting realities.