Studio Class at AA School of Architecture
Studio Class at AA School of Architecture

Kinetic Ko-Habitation

This project was developed by Davis Butner as a student from Yale School of Architecture and was submited to the WAS awards 2017 under the Housing category.

An exploration in extreme efficiency in the planning and construction of a ‘co-habitation’ for two private residences.  For purposes of the exploration, the design is limited to a 16’x’16’x14′ cube, 12′ off the ground, in which light can only enter via the roof structure.  The resulting proposal explores ways in which kinetic architectural elements in the home can add to the efficiency of a space by incorporating a gantry system in each apartment.  The reinforced exterior steel truss structure of the co-habitation (modeled off of a similar technique developed for Enric Ruiz Geli’s MediaTIC design in Barcelona), allows for a column-less interior space in which each floor, central staircase, and all associated kinetic systems to be suspended from the top of the structure.  The gantry system supports a suspended bed and underlying fold-out desk module to move across each apartment, adjusting to the space required for daily tasks of cooking, bathing, cleaning, etc.  In addition to the gantry bed, an extendable pantry system for the kitchen area doubles as a telescoping staircase to reach the bathroom above. A louvered skylight system allows occupants to adjust light and air circulation in each apartment through a mechanized crank system on the wall near the sliding door entrance.  Finally, the central shared staircase extends above the two units through parallel steel trusses to a shared balcony and viewing platform above, crowned with a sliding corrugated roof which would shift throughout the day to accommodate for changes in solar position.