In 1995 University of Kansas School of Architecture & Design Professor Dan Rockhill started nonprofit Studio 804, a course for Masters students and professionals that tasks them with developing a residence or university building from preliminary mockups to laying the foundation to the landscaping —all over a nine month period.
This year’s home, Pinkney Neighborhood House, at 432 Indiana Street, is located in one of the oldest neighborhoods in the city of Lawrence, Kansas on a property previously developed, but more recently plagued with overgrown vegetation. The 26 students in the 2023 cohort designed a 1,800-square-foot single family dwelling and an accompanying 500-square-foot accessory dwelling unit (ADU) on the site.
The site’s close proximity to a flood zone posed a particular challenge to design that had to be worked around. On the exterior a rainscreen insulates the gabled structure, while water barriers also keep unwanted water from entering through. In addition, to mitigate flooding the driveway was covered over with a permeable surface and a rain garden on the lot absorbs water runoff from the roof.
Pinkney Neighborhood House is scaled to fit within the surrounding neighborhood and contains all the domestic necessities a single family home requires: an open kitchen with modern appliances, built-in storage, a bedroom on the main floor with a lofted bedroom suite, and ample furnished outdoor space. The secondary dwelling located adjacent to the main house is placed over the one-car garage equipped with electrical vehicle charging. The rainscreen cladding can be recycled to extend the life of the building material.
Since it was started, the studio has consistently strived to be at the forefront of sustainability. Since 2008, when the studio designed and built the 5.4.7. Arts Center in Greensburg, Kansas, each of its projects has achieved LEED Platinum certification and several have achieved Passive House US (PHIUS) certification. This latest home is no different. Several methods and technologies incorporated in the design and construction of the home aid in the achievement of the sustainability goals, among this a rainscreen ventilated facade, high performance insulation, a louver system, and 16-panel solar array equipped with metal roof attachments generously donated by S-5!, a regular collaborator of Studio 804.
The Pinkney Neighborhood House 2023 is set to be the 176h consecutive project by Studio 804 to achieve LEED Platinum certification.