Maze Design

Part of a Resort Garden, we were asked to design a low hedge in the form of a maze, making it embody the spirit of the outdoors and embracing a family fun atmosphere.  With that, SimpleTwig Architecture proposed the following where animals, a bear, raccoon, seal, beaver and gofer all interact in a whimsical composition.

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The Functional Human, in Home Design

Homes are functional machines, although most people don’t consider this factor when designing a new home, or only as a side note.  Lets, for a moment, discuss the functional aspects of what humans have to deal with when functioning in a home solely from their point of view, and assume there is a fitting design to solve their daily and weekly tasks in order to save humans the maximum amount of time, thus providing extended opportunities to enjoy life.  This is a ‘house as machine’ examination!

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Existing Urban Block and its Inherent Shortcomings

Using New York City as an example, we can examine the typical urban residential block.  Part of a long and narrow grid it provides the basics for laying out residential and commercial districts and buildings. The American grid, with its ascending street numbers or letters, is an organizing approach meant to equalize, to account for expansion and to make navigation easy and efficient.

First we’ll look at a very early Sandborn Map surveyed as housing and other structures were filling in the blocks, analysis this in terms of road to lot ratio, housing disposition and it’s inherent pros/cons, and then explore a few property surveys to see some variations to the individual residential type in NYC.

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40 Unit Apartment Building in Brooklyn – PARKING FACILITIES

This project we’re working on is large enough to break into two articles, the first dealing with the parking facilities. When designing for a large multi-story apartment building, one must provide for parking. There is an option of using off-site parking but essentially one needs to own the property and that property must be within a reasonable distance to your building. That said, like on this project, the parking must be incorporated into the basement space.

This is where good architects stand out in my opinion, in that if the structure is right, and aligns with the apartment units above, there is a substantial savings in the avoidance of transfer beams. This is our approach to help lessen the financial burden of providing a parking garage yet do so in a way that doesn’t negatively impact the apartment units on the upper floors, or the retail space.

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New Residential Development in Brooklyn – RESIDENTIAL COMPONENT

A rather special apartment building design by SimpleTwig Architecture.llc, the concept focuses on making the most of the apartment quality, from the moment one steps off the elevator to the moment one sits down on their sofa, the design seeks to maximize living space while minimizing other spaces without compromising quality living.

This article explores the basic layout of the entire apartment floor plan level, which will be supplemented by images of the actual units tomorrow, since we have so much to share on this project.  This article also corresponds to two additional articles, one on the parking facilities, and the other on the retail, garden and street level planning of the project.  All together, this is how one should make a fully integrated project that makes the most of tenant spaces, provides the community with a special building and provides the owner with a building that is easy to build, maintain and sustain.

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New Residential Development in Brooklyn – RETAIL COMPONENT

We’re putting the final touches on a 40 unit residential project in Brooklyn.  It is pretty special in that the project keeps part of an old theater facade and uses it to announce the retail component of the project, through awnings and little local vendors which can casually set up their wares below the awnings.  The extra traffic and attention will be a boost for the anchor tenant who has a commanding view of this important residential corner.

This project is split into 3 articles, released the 8th of September, the 10th and the 12th.

Come on in and we’ll show you around…

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