Saturday, March 2, 2013

R Street Design Charrette Report

Habitat for Humanity design charrette - Tuesday, February 26, 2013 (photos by Design|Spring)

Habitat for Humanity’s Springfield/Eugene affiliate and Design|Spring partnered last Tuesday to produce a design charrette. Charrette participants learned about the Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI) home ownership model, and developed housing layout design options for a Habitat-owned property in Springfield. 

The property, located on R Street, is a .58 acre lot located adjacent to existing apartments and duplexes in north Springfield. The site presented numerous design challenges to the charrette teams, including its necessary setbacks, utility easements, fire department access, requirements for housing density, and storm water mitigation needs. Above all, Habitat’s model of individual home ownership (rather than multi-family dwellings) and affordability mandates would shape the teams’ responses. 

Habitat asked the workshop participants to suggest options for development of the site to accommodate between 6 and 8 homes. Their solutions needed to fit within HFHI standards of “simple, decent and affordable.” Typically, this means the homes’ living spaces (excluding stairways and exterior storage) do not exceed 900 SF for two bedroom houses, 1,070 SF for three bedroom houses, and 1,230 SF for four bedroom houses. Additionally, HFHI homes do not have garages or carports but are provided with a nearby parking space. 

Both Habitat for Humanity and Design|Spring are pleased by the outcome of the charrette. The event attracted a mix of architects, landscape architects, planners, interns, students, Habitat volunteers, and homebuilders. In the course of two short hours, the charrette teams created nine unique site plans. Their proposals included such site features as bioswales, community gardens, playgrounds, and common greens. 

What’s next for this project? The Habitat organizers plan to present the design ideas generated by the charrette to its Construction Committee for review. The committee will use the ideas to develop a final design layout for the property. Once it settles upon a design, the committee will submit them to the City of Springfield Planning Department for review. In the meantime, Habitat for Humanity will look for sponsors to help with development of the infrastructure and the construction of the individual homes for Habitat partner families. 

Springfield/Eugene Habitat for Humanity thanks Design|Spring for its assistance with facilitating the charrette, as well as all the participants who helped bring Habitat families a little closer to realizing the dream of home ownership: 

Mike and Cathy Olson, George Randle, Jerry Prud’homme, Adam Weis, Jackie Robertson, Roddy Toyota, Jim Brown, Katie Sciotto, Daniel Hill, Ryan Rojas, Mariko Blessing, Rachel Aurbach, David Dougherty, Daniel Abrahamson, Will Dixon, Christopher Deel, Yingying Lin, Jonathan Price, Jenni Rogers, Scott Stolarczyk, Lisa DeHaas, Aaron Buckman, Mark Metzger, and Peter Keyes. 

Visit the Springfield/Eugene Habitat for Humanity website, and “like” Habitat on Facebook.  If you’re interested, go to “Volunteer Up” and become a volunteer at the build site! Here are the links: 
Design|Spring is really hitting its stride. This is an active, energetic group of emerging professionals who know they can make a difference in our community, while simultaneously learning a thing or two along the way. Stay tuned for the next big Design|Spring thing!


Shannon Arms said...

How can I get in contact with Design|Spring?

Randy Nishimura, AIA, CSI, CCS said...


Contact Jenni Rogers at Robertson/Sherwood/Architects (541) 342-8077 or by email at