CALIFORNIA STEEL HOUSE

Date:  Winter 2014
Comprehensive Building Studio
Institution:  UCLA M Arch I
Critic:  Ben Refuerzo

Located on Rose Avenue, near Venice Beach in California, this proposal for a steel house design incorporates an ambitious amount of program into a relatively compact site. The proposal features two parallel structures, each spanning the full length of a gently sloping lot.  In each of the main volumes, both residential and commercial spaces are planned.   


Located on an “up and coming” neighborhood near Venice Beach in California, this project on Rose Avenue incorporates an ambitious amount of program into a fairly compact site.   The design features two parallel structures, each spanning the full length of a gently sloping lot.  In each of the main volumes, both residential and commercial spaces are planned.  Between the parallel structures, a green space is carved out that allows ample light and air to pass through the site.  In this semi-private garden zone, a series of perforated screens offer a veil of privacy for building occupants while, simultaneously, allowing individuals to experience some degree of proximity.

At the far southeast corner of the site, a two-bedroom private residence is planned that can be accessed via a stair located roughly 2 ft below street level in a sunken garden.  Inside the steel and concrete structure, individuals are greeted by an open floor plan that includes a kitchen, living room and outdoor patio.  In the main living area, a stair leads individuals up to a second level where an office and bedroom are positioned on either side of a double-height space that overlooks the dining area and garden zone. A roof deck can also be accessed via a second upper-level stair that transports individuals up to a generous outdoor deck and barbecue area.  

Adjacent to the private home is a combination commercial space and second floor studio. The commercial floor plan is intentionally left loosely defined so that it may be occupied as either one long volume or as two separate properties. The upper-level studio space is accessed via a stair that brings individuals up to a light filled second-story space that spans the full length of the block.