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  Kiwi HouseKiwi House

Architect & General Contractor

+one Design Construction
P.O. Box 40232, Baton Rouge, LA 70835

General Description

Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Negotiated Bid Date: Aug 2008 Construction Period: Aug 2008 to May 2009
Total Square Feet: 1,730* Site: 0.22 acre.
Number of Buildings: One
Building Size: First floor, 1,300; porches, 430; total, 1,730* square feet.
Building Height: First floor, 12’; total, 12’.
Basic Construction Type: New.
Foundation: Post tension. Exterior Walls: Wood frame, metal panel.
Roof: Metal. Floors: Concrete. Interior Walls: Wood stud drywall.

Construction Team

Structural Engineer: Coast Concrete Services, Inc. - P.O. Box 205, Slidell, LA 70461

The Mitchell home - affectionately called the Kiwi house because of its somewhat rough exterior and cool, open interior - optimizes the layout and orientation of its site. In keeping with the traditional imagery of the neighborhood, the house is a modern interpretation of the shotgun house, built for less than $100 a square foot.

The guiding design philosophy for the Kiwi House - and for that matter +one as a whole - can be broken down into three principles: respond to the site to allow the structure to bolster an existing sense of community, tread lightly on natural resources minimizing consumption and waste and finally plan for efficiency of energy use and reduction of energy loss.

The 1,300 square foot, 3 bedroom, 2 bath house has an additional 430 square feet of covered porches. The master bedroom, with private bath and walk-in closet, opens up to the backyard and private porch. The laundry and storage room are located in the center of the house dividing the public space from the private space. At the front of the house is a living room/kitchen combination featuring a full glass facade connecting the Mitchells to their community and the "front porch" culture of their neighborhood.

Equally important to community is +one's commitment to designing and building with an environmental conscience. As Fritz Embaugh +one CEO said, "One of the simplest ways to protect the environment and create less waste is to use less of its natural resources, so we intentionally incorporated these principles into the design."

Staying true to this philosophy, the company chose to address environmental concerns in a myriad of ways. On the interior they designed details using a metal reglet system, allowing +one to eliminate crown molding and baseboards. By configuring the layout to block sight lines, they were able to remove unnecessary doors. On the exterior, +one choose to sheath the house in galvanized metal panels and fiber cement board; each chosen for their durability, thermal properties and resistance to termites and mold. The metal roof and siding are 100% recyclable with the entire house designed in 2-foot increments minimizing the amount of overall building material waste.

The third guiding principle - energy efficiency - dictated room layout and placement of porches and windows to avoid thermal heat transfer by opening the house to the East and turning from the west. Large overhangs and protruding exterior walls shield all exposed windows preventing direct sun light. Small upper windows were installed in the large rooms allowing cross ventilation without sacrificing privacy. Additionally, the house is built on a concrete slab, as opposed to traditional pier and beam, creating a large thermal mass to help avoid large swings in temperature. All ductwork in the home is encapsulated in insulation to avoid heat loss and gain, as is the mechanical closet to eliminate an additional heat source contrary to cooling the house. The subtle pitch of the roof (belied by the high ceilings) was selected to reduce the air mass and its subsequent heating and cooling requirements.

Product Information
Roofing & Metal Panel: Berridge Manufacturing
Windows: T & L Forest Products

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