borden partnership architecture+design


    6 of 20
    propositions for suburban living
The following are propositions for introducing ultra-modern single family housing into the current landscape. 20 houses have been developed with 6 of them illustrated in greater detail. The houses employ, phasability, modularity, careful spatial planning, materials, program, light and culture to maintain affordability, update the current “house,” and increase the quality of the space and composition. These proposals selectively re-present aspects of the current suburban domestic condition while beginning the evolution to a new way of living. They are proposals to make the ordinary extraordinary. The contemporary landscape is suburban. The “common” landscape is the new frontier. When speaking towards contemporary American Architecture, the suburban condition and the associated trends and traditions of sprawl, the dominant engine is the single-family detached house. The American Dream of home ownership propagates the loose development tendencies that spawn the ringing development of downtown centers. Arterial development of commercial strip centers, big box commercial stores, and the brand name have extended disposable commodities to include the residence. The house has evolved to hybridize the generic image and function of living. Practicality has been sacrificed for iconography. Technological evolutionary booms, occurring with frequent spurts across the past century, have demanded an associated ingestion into the home formally, functionally, and programmatically to no avail. The parameters of domesticity have been changed. The current single-family house subscribes to a model that addresses bank loan guidelines, but denies the contemporary cultural condition. The forms, functions, and styles though commonplace, are anachronistic and divorced from their original intention. The focus on type, via technology rather than nostalgia, will provide meaning through formal, functional, and cultural evolution. The following propositions present opportunities for the conventional and average condition: the reconsideration of the single-family home. Iterations based upon the standard economic, programmatic and functional needs illustrate the potential to find architecture in the “ordinary.” By focusing both the process and fabrication of the house, the prototypes suggest a method of design positioning contemporary culture as the foundation for specific and viable solutions for changing our constructed landscape. These prototype houses “build what we are.”

 Program House
The program house relies upon three primary guiding principles: the articulation of form based upon program, the collection of these articulated programs on an indoor-outdoor plinth, and the ability to phase these programs over time. Their collection results in interstitial space that bridges and blurs the boundary and compartmentalization of both program and house.

Gradient House
The gradient house separates program between public and private function into two identical bars. Shifted geometries allow for the two bars to gently touch and create a diversity of residual spaces throughout the site. The floor plates slide past each of the boxes to create a substantial rear porch.


Porch House
The porch house centers around the link between the landscape and the daily activities of the house. Despite the small, surrounded and confined lot, an exterior room is carved out and defined by using the building, segregated into multiple pavilions by program, to wrap an exterior plinth.

Tube House
The tube house striates the programmatic cycle of the house as a cul-de-sac of daily activity. Linearly organizing the functional activities of: garage, entry, kitchen, dining, living, TV, laundry, stair, closet, bath, and sleep: the cycle progresses and reverses relative to the 24 hour cycle of domestic activity.

 Constellation House
The constellation house shifts the traditional responsibility of the wall to the roof. The result is an internal world articulated by large roof apertures that draw you through the house with light.

Enclosure House
The enclosure house relies upon a single wrapper of standing seam metal to enclose itself. A recessed [to provide porches both in front and back] front wall establishes a public face with functionally choreographed punched openings. The back elevation is a transparent, operable facade, recessed for privacy and incrementally studded with colored metal panels for storage. A central core houses the functional service components of the house bifurcating the house into public and private realms.