Our class has continued to stay fast paced on our design. At this point, we are at about sixty percent complete on our Construction Documents for our Ogden project. We are still working in our separate groups. One group is working on the model, another on the structure and load calculations. Another group is working on the cost estimating and details of the building. The last group is working on casework. This group has designed the custom casework in the kitchen and entry space and will eventually create these cabinets for the house in our fabrication lab at Kansas State University.
On Friday of this last week, four members of our class presented a “sneak peek” presentation to Manhattan Area Habitat for Humanity and a few members of the community. The group was extremely receptive of our current design and excited to see it come to life. We are eager to bring a house to the Ogden community that pushes the boundaries of what workforce housing is supposed to look like. We are not only doing this but also making it blend with the community and not be so out of place. Our goal is to make an affordable house with several passive strategies seem achievable to others in the community as well.
We are off to a fast-paced start to 2021 at the Net+ studio. We spent our first week in small groups working hard to integrate our designs from last semester toward one final house. On Monday, we met with our final iterations of the three final schemes and voted on which design we thought was the best to move forward with. After Monday, we formed new groups to tackle refining and completing the design. Our four teams focused on areas of the central model setup, house structure, cost estimation, and casework, but quickly moved to encompass more. On Wednesday we met briefly with the shareholders of the project and gave them an update with the new plan, interior and exterior renderings, diagrams and more. We talked through issues and concerns as they overall expressed interest and excitement in the project and wanted to see even more updates as the project moves forward. With so much to do in such a short time, Thursday was spent updating and refining all aspects of the design, and by Friday we were able to formulate the overall exterior shape, trim the plan down to a more efficient use of space, and have a kitchen and window plan hammered out. In addition, the structure and cost estimation are now at a good place in terms of figuring out some of the beginning details of construction. Looking forward to next week, we will be looking to finalize the envelope design and plan, as well as adding a final energy analysis. In addition, we will be starting mechanical, electrical and plumbing drawings, as well as construction detailing and fabrication drawings. It’s hard to imagine that we have done so much in so little time, but there is still so much to do! All in all, this is shaping up to be a busy but exciting Spring!
As soon as our studio were done with Analysis and Detail Phase, we got into doing our research book during our thanksgiving break.
We had to do research analysis of two places, Ogden and Manhattan. So, we had divided people into groups to take responsibility to look into different areas of research. At the end of our thanksgiving break we had to present the draft of our research book to Professor Gibson. We compiled the research book by adding information about the site and their neighborhood analysis, housing archetypes. We also added our case studies and the St. John Work Trips.
The research book is still in progress and we will continue adding information such as our design, the construction work etc.
Our Studio has now closed out our Analysis and Detail phase. This phase includes refinements of the previous phases work, as well as a deeper look into the details of construction and costs.
Each of us have been individually meeting with Professor Gibson to achieve the level of refinement we currently have. This last Wednesday we met with stakeholders and Kansas State professors to present our current work. With much critique by the professors, there is excitement in the air as we move into the next semester.
Moving into the next semester we can expect to refine our work into one project and begin working on construction documents. We are very excited to continue our work and bring it to a point where we can begin construction on the project.
The end of October and early November saw the studio return to St. John for the final sessions of the year. As state in an earlier post, the group that made the trip in late October had the task of erecting the porch columns and installing the prefab porch roof panels, as well as completing the roof. The columns were first set and secured to the bases, and once the beams sat atop them, the process of attaching the roof sections was able to commence.
The remaining half of the studio travelled to St. John in early November and took on the task of creating and placing the interior walls. The walls were framed onsite, and once completed were placed in the proper position within the house. By the end of the build session, it is estimated that roughly 50% of the interior framing is complete with the rest hopefully being completed in the near future.
These past couple of weeks our studio has been transitioning from Schematic Design into the Design Development phase. At this point, our designs have reached the stage in which we have figured out the larger ideas and now we can start to understand the details of each one. We are fine tuning our designs and starting energy and cost analysis of each design to determine the feasibility of whether or not it should be built.
Some of the things we are looking at in our energy analysis is thermal and daylighting quality. Thermal analysis allows us to take a closer look at the energy outputs of lighting, equipment, heating, and cooling loads. This analysis will be able to tell us our our average monthly utility costs for the house and whether or not these can be offset with photovoltaics. Daylighting Analysis allows us to understand whether or not our house can operate during the day without the use of lighting equipment.
Upon returning from Thanksgiving break, we have a bit of time to finalize our work before final presentations with our stakeholders.
This week in studio we started off by preparing for our 4th trip to the St. John build site. Our goals for the house were to get the porch up and have everything finished on the outside to prepare for the siding, roofing, and landscaping crews to do their work on the exterior of the house.
Late last week we split into 3 respective groups based on parts of the house we would be working on; porch, casework, and interior walls. The porch group was tasked with designing and building the structural columns for the porch section. We designed how the columns would be built and had the gusset plates cut with the plasma cutting bed to ensure precise and matching pieces. We then welded together the columns on Tuesday in preparation to paint them on Wednesday along with building the roof sections that cover the porch section.
Friday, the majority of the group was able visit the build site to set up the columns and anchor them to their respective concrete bases. Then we placed the beams atop them and attached the roofing sections as well. We were able to finish installing the zip board on top of that and tape the seams.
After finishing the porch the house is ready to have the exterior siding and roofing done, as well as landscaping to conclude work on the exterior of the home.
We started off with our revised workforce housing presentation, students virtually conveyed some critical aspects of Manhattan’s existing housing conditions and how Net+ design will positively impact the area. The studio then shared a series of diagrams and images to communicate the site analysis of both Lee Mills and Ogden sites.
Then, students were able to present a final showcase of their innovative, affordable housing designs, allowing participants to provide some insight and constructive feedback on their work. The meeting was received positively by those who could be there and was recorded for those who could not make the Friday presentation.
As we reach the end of the SD phase; we achieved a conceptual development through utilization of our research concerning the housing conditions in Manhattan. The next step of the studio is to develop these proposals in greater detail with feedback from our stockholder group and students studying the building systems and trades.
Our studio is now coming to a close on our Schematic Design phase. This is when we design the form and function of our proposed house designs through several iterations. We have done research on the needs of the communities we are designing for, environmental factors, and general good design.
As a group we have collaborated with one another along with Professor Gibson to refine our work to the stage it is currently. This coming up Monday we will be having a private mid critique of our work done by faculty of the College of Architecture, Planning, and Design. Following this critique our studio will have a week’s time to take the feedback we receive and fine tune our designs accordingly.
The final presentation of the Schematic Design phase will be held with our studio’s stakeholders as the critiques. Following this critique, the SD phase will be completed, and our studio will then move into the Design Development phase. We are looking forward to making our presentations and using the advice we receive to further our work.
As the Net+ Studio began transitioning into the schematic design phase, the work at St. John could not be abandoned. As winter is approaching, we were tasked with making sure the house was sealed up.
On the first build day, there was a fairly large group of students. We worked together to seal up the windows and get them placed. Even with some small hiccups, we were able to get all of the windows in. Professor Gibson and Devon, from Eco Devo, spent the afternoon on the roof. The next day was spent taping up the joints and they attempted to install the back door, but it could not be accomplished due to the lack of students that could help that day.
The team on Wednesday was able to complete the roof, which included cutting the insulation and OSB. Overall this build session was successful, even though we still have some more flashing to place. Since we were able to complete the roof and get the windows placed, we will spend the next few weeks working on the Schematic Design phase of our project before returning to St. John. In the meantime, we will spend some days in the shop assembling the screen for the porch, the cabinets, and welding the steel columns.