February 23, 2012 5:45 AM
After a brief respite for Mardi Gras, construction has resumed at 1909 Toledano St. in New Orleans as a cadre of students begin roofing and Sheetrocking the seventh house to be designed and built through the Tulane School of Architecture’s URBANbuild program.
Construction, which began in the first week of the spring semester, is about half completed and should be finished by late April. The work is done by 15 students who are each putting in approximately 50 hours a week, says Byron Mouton, the program’s director and a professor of practice.
“They take three courses with me,” he says. “A six-hour design studio course, an advance technology course and a professional concerns course. It’s all wrapped up in the program.”
The URBANBuild program has partnered with Neighborhood Housing Services, a local nonprofit that provides the site and construction funding, as well as identifies future homeowners.
Each house designed and built through URBANbuild serves as a prototype for sustainable, environmentally friendly and affordable housing, and each has its own set of distinguishing characteristics.
“In this case we have a west-facing façade that is louvered with a pretty inventive screening system,” says Mouton. “Behind that screen is outdoor living space.”
In neighborhoods typically populated with traditional shotgun houses, the URBANbuild homes stand out.
“We are tying to be a little bit more progressive,” says Mouton.
Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5000 email@example.com