Dec. 23rd A Holiday Message and Happy 2016!

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As 2016 is about to start, we here at Studio Luz are excited to reflect on the almost complete new residential building, Piedmont Park Square. As part of our reflection, we recognize that this building is not a result of a singular effort by one group of people but built upon a collaborative team invested in design.  We are indebted to our clients, TCR Development and JB Ventures for giving Studio Luz and our consultants the opportunity to see the collaborative efforts come into built reality. The new construction of eight residential units in Bay Village would not have been possible without the contractors, Atlantic Management, and their dedication to seeing this through.  It is rewarding to see how many people we have collaborated with on this project and helped us successfully complete this milestone work. Thank you for the privilege!

We have much to look forward to in 2016, including projects under way and new clients that we will certainly enjoy working with. We will starting construction on multiple single family renovations in the Boston area including Brookline, Beacon Hill, Roslindale, Weston and Brighton.  For residential projects, we rely on contractors that are creative problem solvers and have a proven track record to build our projects. We want to thank Aldor Corporation, Aedi Construction and FH Perry Builders for their trusted relationships.  We are forming a new collaboration with Cocobeet, an innovative food company looking to expand their existing Boston business with a new location in Wellesley, MA. Stay tuned for design updates in 2016!

There is nothing more rewarding than the work we do, as it brings together so many people to make for better spaces, better buildings and ultimately better experiences. Thanks to everyone we have worked with and we send our best wishes for peace, health and happiness for the New Year!

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Above: Dustin Street renovation, Brighton, MA

 

A Year in Review:

The Meyer Residence received The American Architecture Award for 2015. This award honors the best, new significant buildings and landscape and planning projects designed and/or built in the United States. The Meyer Residence drawings and photos are being exhibited at the Chicago Athenaeum and the European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies in Chicago in December 2015. After Chicago, the exhibition travels to Izmir Turkey and then to our Museum in Athens, Greece.

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Image courtesy of John Horner Photography

Studio Luz is waiting on permits for Bruno‘s Burgersa 2,000 square foot, 62-seat restaurant featuring grass-fed burgers, sandwiches & shakes in Cape Cod, MA.  Studio Luz assisted the owners in developing the brand, graphic design and space that will serve meat that is raised naturally without antibiotics or hormones. Studio Luz designed a new façade and interiors, featuring vertical wood Garapa fins that help to animate and transform a former donut shop.

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Studio Luz completed the Providence Foods Marketplace feasibility study for the City of Providence. Intending to create a new form of civic space that supports the local food culture, the City of Providence approached Studio Luz to come up with a new food/ marketplace typology. This new building would house and celebrate the local farmers, food makers and entrepreneurs by providing a diverse set of spaces where they can sell their produce.

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ACTAR recently released an article written by Hansy Better Barraza,  “Architect as Initiator: Searching for Authentic Production” in Beyond Patronage: Reconsidering Models of Practice edited by Martha Bohm, Joyce Hwang, and Gabrielle Printz. The article discusses projects designed and built by BR+A+CE, a 501c3 non-profit co-founded by Hansy Better Barraza and Anthony Piermarini, and how they related to notions of architectural “patronage” today and their implications in design, research, and practice.

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Jun. 25th Building Your Home can be Affordable in the City

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Studio Luz Architects designed the Meyer Residence to balance aesthetics, high performance building systems, and affordability. Developed on a vacant lot, and with close consultation with neighbors and community leaders, Studio Luz sought to create a new home that was uniquely crafted to allow for a growing family to stay in the neighborhood. Through modern design sensibilities and careful working of materials, the result is a home that nestles into a hillside and pulls the outside in. The house is Energy Star certified, utilizing high performance appliances, air tight construction, foam insulation that exceeds code, high performance glazing systems, mini-split heating and cooling, on-demand hot-water service, rain water management on site, as well a suite of ecologically sensitive finishes.

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One example of bespoke made affordable is the building envelope; through a careful choreography of construction a custom vertical wood cladding was made using panels that were pre-cut off-site and then clipped on to a rainscreen system in the field. The wood selected is IBAMA and SEMA certified IPE siding. Aedi Construction, the contractor for the project, brought their expertise in green construction and worked creatively to coordinate all of the custom off-site fabrication using typical home building methods and materials.


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On the interior, the central stair space is another example of the balance between performance and aesthetic affect. The stair performs both as a way to circulate through the house, but also as a large semi transparent light well, penetrating all levels of the house. The perforations in the stair treads and risers allow for air to circulate through the house with ease and create beautiful visual effects with sunlight and maintain visual connections. The use of the bent metal produced a very thin stair profile, eliminating expressed structural supports, adding a sense of levity.

Features of the home promote family living, including a central kitchen space that unites living and dining areas. Some others include bookshelves that have hidden work surfaces and shared closet areas to promote interaction among the family.

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The windows allow for ample day lighting, with strategic apertures for southern light, and panoramic windows that frame the landscaped hillside. There is a garden view to the east framed by picture windows that allow the first rays of sunrise to dapple in through the trees. The landscape was designed by C2 | Studio Landscape Architecture based in Fort Collins, CO.

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Neighborhood Initiatives:

The Meyer St. Residence is located on the periphery of the Woodbourne Historic area of Jamaica Plain. The neighborhood‘s planning is inspired by the garden city movement. Most recently, there have been a number of individual and city initiatives to make development within the neighborhood examples for energy efficient building strategies. One example is the Boston’s Positive (E+) Green Building Demonstration Program, developed to create more affordable energy positive homes in the city and encouraging the use of ecologically minded design strategies. Studio Luz Architects took on the challenge of designing a house that promotes environmental responsibility in building and leads by example by incorporating affordable energy efficient systems. Recently, within one block of the Meyer Street residence, four other homes have been developed with high performance and ecologically sensitive strategies. We see this project contributing to the long-term vitality of the neighborhood and city.

The Meyer Street Residence was featured in an article “Local Architects build ‘supergreen’ dream house” written by Rebeca Oliveira in the Jamaica Plain Gazette. For additional project images, we invite you to visit our website.