|Re: Fwd: Why buildings should be dumb boxes||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: Philip Dowds (rphilipdowdsme.com)|
|Date: Sun, 26 Aug 2018 02:55:29 -0700 (PDT)|
> On Aug 25, 2018, at 2:32 PM, Sharon Villines via Cohousing-L <cohousing-l > [at] cohousing.org> wrote: > > On Aug 25, 2018, at 1:57 PM, Philip Dowds <rphilipdowds [at] me.com> wrote: >> >> One of many things I was told, as a first year architecture student, was >> that “Corners are expensive.” I was not told, however, that corners are bad >> because they cost money. Rather, the point was resources are finite, and >> need to be deployed wisely. > > But many cohousers are working with architects and contractors have not told > communities that they can make their projects less expensive by reducing the > number of corners. While the central point is that "resources are finite, and > need to be deployed wisely”, people need to know what things cost in order > deploy wisely. I am certainly not an architect, but I’ve worked on a fair > number of planning committees for various types of buildings and never been > told that corners are expensive. It’s true that some designs are what I would call “over-articulated”, and what others might describe as having “too many corners”: Designs where every room in the building is expressed by two or more exterior corners; and indoors, every piece of furniture, and each distinct activity, is received and celebrated by its own alcove. I encounter these things from time to time, and usually want to the find the architects and tell them, “Stop designing!” However, for residential clients struggling with a budget, I would not start my advice by telling them to cut corners. Or to go for cheap materials. Instead, I would emphasize other strategies, like standardizing the floor plans (e.g., make do with one or two types of 2-bedroom layouts, rather than five or seven), and multi-family buildings (which often can obtain considerable efficiencies in the envelope and HVAC). Interestingly, cohousing offers embedded opportunities for one of life’s best money-saving strategies, which is … sharing. When everyone agrees to time-share specialized amenities like a guest room or crafts room, then many households find they need not invest in a comparable privatized version within their own dwellings. Thanks, RPD
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