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Beautiful sustainable home within an urban reserve

Selected for the 2008 Dallas AIA Homes Tour, the UR22 Residence is a 4,000 square foot single family home within the Urban Reserve; a master planned sustainable development in Dallas, Texas. UR22 was designed by for “empty nesters” that desire a high degree of internal and external connectivity while providing a sense of privacy for family and overnight guests. Due to their frequent entertaining, the clients also required a flexible space able to accommodate both small gatherings and large parties. The stringent development code for the Urban Reserve included compact 50 foot wide lots with a mandatory zero-lot line / restricted view to the north side of the lot.

With relatively opaque walls on the north, east and west, the UR22 Residence is elongated along the east-west axis to maximize buildable area within the narrow site. A large expanse of high efficiency glazing on the south wall enhances the sense of interpenetration between interior gathering space and exterior garden, allowing an easy flow across boundaries. UR22’s protective slate envelope is precisely configured to control the intense Texas sun while channeling cooling breezes to protected exterior spaces on the second floor. Repetitive glue laminated timber frames establish a consistent reference for spatial organization while expressing the dynamics of lateral and gravity forces. The serial disposition of the frames introduces an element of material warmth and structural decoration throughout the flexible open plan.

One of the first homes built in the development; this project demonstrates the developer’s intention to create a high-density suburban environment with a sense of community and sustainability at the scale of both development and home. Location within a Smart Growth Planning Zone, passive solar design and day lighting, low impact and renewable materials, advanced framing techniques with digital modeling, rainwater harvesting, and ground source heat pumps all combine to give the UR22 Residence LEED Gold Certification and a Home Energy Rating of 50, using approximately 1/2 the energy per square foot of a typical home.

Visit the website of Vincent Snyder Architects .

Photos: Chuck Smith Photography

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