Driveway Transition

When a driveway is too steep as it intersects with the roadway, it can cause property damage by allowing the bottom of vehicles’ bumpers to scrape on the asphalt. Further, there can be scratch marks in the driveway where the bumpers of trucks have failed to clear the surface when trying to enter the property, shortening the lifespan of the driveway. This modest modification at the transition can eliminate those issues.

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Complete Home Programming-Part 1 Intro

Architectural design revolves around several components that when integrated properly can create a beautiful expression that is also functional. Functionality can be described as both the efficiency of its programmatic uses (such as laundry room), and, as a component of how the edifice is perceived (the visual function of a building being expressed as a residence, place of worship, etc.).

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Covid Grocery/Delivery: Protecting People

No one wants to be responsible for someone’s death. At the same time the community needs to be served, providing the products they need, while providing jobs to keep the economy sustained and businesses open. We therefore need to take appropriate steps to ensure everyone around us is safe, and ensuring the survivability of our businesses. 

To protect staff is essential, because if one staff member gets infected there’s a chance the entire staff will be infected. Therefore strict measures should be put into place to ensure the business can stay open.

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Quantitative Deduced Program for Large Residential Developments

The following analysis for ‘large residential developments’ provides the basics to determining actual quantities of varying sized dwelling units which includes both owner occupied and rentals, as well as low, moderate and high-end units. This program development is done to create a development which reinforces the fundamental composition of a vibrant community, an important part of any neighborhood.  The analysis, based on population quantities and age groups, creates a prototype model which can be applied to future residential developments. It also accommodates a small percentage of affordable housing which can be provided at little or no cost, thus responding to a growing social need and proving itself worthy, in all respects, to being an integral part of a community.

The community, both physical and psychological, wishes to achieve the feeling of an extended family, in which all its inhabitants are respected and welcomed, ensuring that no person shall be brushed away as not worthy. It is a community which embraces variety both physically (in the physical form and detail) and in its spirit, for it is variety that provide the foundation for a thriving, energetic, vibrant place. The result in all aspects reflects the best of social living.

The resulting development, containing between 300 and 1500 units, plays its part of a larger city block and street/city scape, incorporating the spirit of surrounding context and enhancing its place with connections to other parts of the city, establishing its place within the larger community.  The resulting design, much like the Boston ‘Tent City’ residential development which I designed, consists of a combination of low and mid-rise structures. And for this study I take the best of what I design there, both physically and programmatically, pushing that design technology forward using data from a variety of sources to support the resulting conclusions.

This is Part 1 of an unknown series of examinations into creating the perfect urban residential development. One that is self-sustaining, environmentally friendly and inclusive.  It hope to establish basics of program, reinforcing things all humans need to feel like they are home, welcomed, secured and proud of their habitation.

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The problem with Zoning’s FAR

FAR, the floor area ratio, is determined by multiplying the area of a property by a number determined by the property’s zoning district.  For instance a 20’x100′ property in a zoning district of R5 has a factor of 1.25 allowing for 2500 square feet of ‘habitable’ interior space.

The issue is what is considered habitable. FAR accounts for the gross built area including thicknesses of walls, suggesting that the very walls that help define the interior spaces are habitable.  This results in something unfortunate, the attempt to make structural walls thinner resulting in larger interior spaces, which results in buildings that feel less sturdy by the increase in noise infiltration, vibration and other factors.

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Utility Study [part of ‘City for 50 million’ prototype]

This is a rather mundane study to illustrate one point, that by positioning utility lines in the optimum location, there is a significant savings of material, and thus of maintenance, resulting in cities that can better serve their residents needs.  But positioning of utilities, like telephone, cable, water, sewer, gas, steam and electrical is only part of the puzzle in developing a new urban prototype that will not only accommodate more people in better urban environments, but do so with less cost for maintenance into the future.

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Combining Two Properties or Condominiums in NYC

Property owners, builders, developers, architects, and engineers may request permission from both the Department of Finance and the Department of Buildings to divide (apportion) or merge (combine) lots. Approval depends on several factors including tax and zoning rules. The Department of Finance Tax Map Office is responsible for processing these requests.

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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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