When commencing a new project, the first site visit is an essential moment in the process — and presents an opportunity to design our projects with the initial visceral experience in mind.
The site informs our design process completely. During the conceptualization of how the project is going to look, feel and breathe, we take into account a site’s pre-existing conditions, the surrounding area and what the actual location has to offer.
With our project Studio House, the site itself was just off a dusty country road in the outer banks of Virginia. Standing before it, it was obvious that we should orient the house with the broad elevation commanding the site and overlooking the bay.
The site itself greatly informed how we would go about controlling light intake, views, wind and sound. Inspired by the steady procession from the street to the top of the dune, intuitively we felt the residence should reveal itself gradually, slowly opening up to the bay as you traveled through it.
It just goes to show that an approach to design isn’t necessarily clinical; rather, it’s a very sensory experience.
February 28, 2013