A Beast is Gone

Once this was a start of the art, whiz bang amazing piece of hardware, aquired for thousands of dollars, helping create a great many cool visuals and copies … but gradually it lost it’s luster, until finally it was just a giant beast, weighing hundreds of pounds, awaiting some new fate or adventure.  Today – thanks to craigs list- the beast found a new place to lurk.  I helped it along … grunting along with the new

owner to push it up a ramp onto a trailer.  Bye bye beast!

Kudos from a customer: warms the heart

Hi Mike,

…. I was very pleased to work with Joe Montalvo and his team of tradesmen.  I credit him with the way costs were contained; they ended  up being very close to the estimates and allowances we assembled last July.  There were surprises and complications along the way of course, but we worked together to solve problems.  There is one more inspection and Joe won’t call for it until fans are installed in the crawlspace as specified.  The cost of the project came out to be very close to your estimate of nearly a year ago, when initial discussions were leading up to actual drawings and specifications.

 

The remodel has improved the look of the house immensely.  The reconfigured interior space is great, and we really like the Velux skylights you recommended.  I will soon have new furniture and then the space can begin to feel like home again.  The patio is especially terrific.  Reorienting it along the long axis of the house, under the new trusses has made a huge difference in function and appearance. 

 

Many thanks for getting us to this point.  The house is a better fit now, and we should have many good years to enjoy it.

 

Judy

 

July 26th San Jose: Join me for conversation and Libations

AIA Members (and potential AIA members) + Conversations + Libations Mike Malinowski AIA , California Region AIA National Board Member Is pleased to extend an Open Invitation Let’s chat about the Future of the AIA, Architects, and Architecture (aka Repositioning) 5pm to 7pm Friday July 26th LosGatos Brewery First couple pitchers / appetizers my treat 163 W Santa Clara St San Jose, CA RSVP appreciated – but not required

Container Architecture in an Urban setting

Container architecture is a trendy modality that is gaining traction.  When driven to consider this motif strictly by ‘low budget’ the results can be disasterous.  There are emerging examples of how this design specialty can add an edgy vibe in a low density environment, even in a ‘quasi urban’ setting.   

 

Ideally, infill development has design details that contribute to a neighborhood’s economic vitality. Examples include high quality materials, permanent landscaping, creative and innovative use of light, color, and form; massing which is compatible with the existing streetscape, and thoughtful provisions for such mundance necessities as utilities, trash, security, and ‘eyes on the street’ at all hours. 

 

Using Containers in architecture is a new and evolving motif that can in theory achieve desired goals, but the highest degree of design experience talent and resources are required to do so with this modality as compared to more conventional development. A well thought out design whether using containers or not adds stability, visual appeal, economic vitality and beauty in façade and landscape treatment.  


Here is an example of a container ‘restaurant’ structure that is in downtown Carlsbad.  In it’s context, I believe this has been a successful installation.  Part of the story is that the container motif helped avoid any excavation on this former gas station occupied parcel with serious ground contamination that prevented excavation.  Landscape consisted of stabilized decomposed granite and artificial turf, with wrought iron fencing.  There are probably other examples of how this design challenge has been ‘pulled off ‘ – along with I’m afraid many examples of attempts which have been less than successful. 

 

For an example of what would be a visual disaster in a similar urban location, here is a different example of a ‘container art gallery’.  While this project has won design awards – it works only in its suburban setting as a temporary installation space.  In an urban setting it would have been a visual disaster.  The interiors are lovely – but this composition is not so friendly on the exterior.  More here: http://aiasf.org/programs/competition/design-awards/2012/triskelion/

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