Welcome Home

  • Caption
Related people
Ethan Lethander (designer)
Jenna Call (designer)
Ashley Bigham (studio professor)
Autumn 2021
American suburbia is often viewed as a reflection of typical family structures, but in reality is a severe debasement of how most people live. The suburbs only represent the traditional nuclear family, an institution to which fewer and fewer people belong. This project explores how the suburbs can acknowledge a variety of family types across the spectrum of perceived societal normalcy by proposing a flexible prototype for American housing. The site, located in Tomball, TX, is divided into 216’ square gridded blocks with space for movement between them. Property owners buy 9-square modules within these blocks and live in the largest unit on the lot. The living space of each resident is continuous, so interior space sometimes crosses property lines. Owners of each 9-square are also responsible for the exterior space within their property’s boundaries, resulting in a patchwork-like quality of landscape materiality. The second floor is comparatively very fragmented, growing and changing over time. Residents who buy a property have the option to add an extra room (or rooms) above the first floor. These rooms are discrete and not connected to the overall form as they can be readily deployed based on residents’ needs or desires. The dissociation between property and inhabited space is also clear in section. The overlapping layers of property and lived space in plan are revealed to be striated and intermingled layers of land, house, and roof.