Design Development Snapshot

Posted on by Lauren M

It's always fascinating to develop a concept from a schematic idea to a well-developed and thoughtful design, driven by research, client input, and constructability issues.

For MYD's project in Oahu, we've been going through this iterative process and the design has progressed based on a number of factors that we thought might be interesting to share, as well as offer a glimpse into our design development process.

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One of the most significant changes to the floor plan involves the location of and access to the garage.  After several concepts with the garage visually 'hidden' upon approach, we determined we could make better use of the narrow, deep site by detaching this element.  This determination was based on a bit of research into the cultural patterns of development, based on climate and location and the indoor/outdoor lifestyle predominant in the area.

This change allowed for more architectural articulation, underscoring the post-and-beam aesthetic of an authentic plantation-style home, with a covered breezeway serving as the connection between the two structures.

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Another development that may not be as apparent in these renderings, but will make the interior spaces feel significantly larger, is the foundation.  The initial design had a raised floor system on piers, based on traditional building methods utilized in the region.  After a dialogue with an experienced local architect, we discovered that a slab-on-grade application (often used here in Southern California) was feasible, giving an additional 18 inches of height to the interior and increasing the slope of the roof, allowing for better roof drainage, as well as increased articulation of traditional local residential design influences.

Another noteworthy item is the inclusion of operational awning windows at the clerestory of the two story space, allowing the homeowners more access to prevailing winds, enabling passive cooling and a better-moderated temperature on both the first and second levels.

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These are just a few examples of how the design development process is critical in the evolution of a design from concept to construction.  It's always different and we learn something every time, and we hope you've enjoyed this snapshot of the process that informs the built spaces where we live, work and play. Read more posts about our process at MYD blog.