Avante Garage – A New Model from Old Zoning
We have a new, and as yet, somewhat secretive project that has led us to a brand new model. The impetus behind this model was a set of existing zoning plans that came along with the piece of land in question. These zoning plans were, by and large, pretty similar to most construction in the neighborhood. They featured three stories and fairly standard lot coverage. They were pretty easy to adapt for our own odd purposes except for one glaring discrepancy . . . garages.
Garages never seemed like something we were likely to do. We have a general aversion to the way they place an inflated value on automobile ownership, and we don’t like the blank face they show to the street. However, we have an even stronger aversion to the zoning process which is slow, painful and often seems combative for little to no reason. So, we felt it was wise to incorporate the existing garage zoning into our plans, but as always, we’ll do it our way.
The current concept is to separate the garage entirely from the house. This simplifies insulation and air sealing, and it protects the house from the nasty air that often gathers in garages. In other words, we will basically be building the entire house above the garage. In effect, this is similar to the concept of our WORK model where the entire downstairs is an open space, but in this case, that space is unconditioned. It can be used for storage, tinkering, play or even, car parking, and it will open out directly into the backyard. We also plan to create some level of transparency to the front garage door to soften it’s “blank face” impact.
The following are some conceptual plans we are currently working with. You will note that ISA has developed a sort of split level model with some interesting open space between the floors. We are also hoping to include a roof deck and expect these homes to have a nice view of the city. Take a look . . .
As you can see, there are two different floor plans we are throwing around. For the sake of discussion we will differentiate the two by calling the top one, with the kitchen in the front, “Steve” and the bottom one, with the kitchen in the back, “Gwen”. You will also note that both Steve and Gwen have a rendering associated with them. These renderings show a concept for the back space of each design.
So let’s hear your thoughts. How do you like the overall concept? Do you prefer Steve or Gwen? What are specific elements you like or dislike? Do you want one of these (looks like we are only building four so speak up)?
Say it in the comments.