Inspired by vernacular dog-trot house in Texas, This O House proposed an alternative design solution by infilling the dilapidated neighborhood with affordable and sustainable houses that can easily be converted to allow homeowner to share space with students and faculties. As enrollment increases at Universities in Houston Historical Third Ward neighborhood, Universitites face the challenges of traffic congestion and in providing adequate parking spaces for students who commute to school. Parking garages have often being the short term solutions which not only pollute our environment but also transfer the cost of construction to students through perking permit charges. Through home sharing, it allows students and faculties to live near campus, public transportation or bicycle can replace dependence on automobile. Thus eliminate the needs of parking. In addition, this could increase homeownership which result in revitalization of this neighborhood.
This O House is a one thousand square feet, 3.5 bedrooms with 2 bathrooms single family home. The floor plan is two L shape dwelling units that forms a courtyard in the middle. The key to its design is the flexibility and adaptability of converting into duplex simply by closing doors at the shared laundry room. Each unit will have its own entrance to give maximum privacy and security to both homeowner and tenant. Homeowner can use the second unit as student rental, office or granny suite for multi-generational living. The income from the rental can be used to offset mortgage which encourage homeownership.
This O House also offers versatility in its façade to accommodate different localized building material. In addition, the interior courtyard serves as a blank canvas for residents to create a social space according to their needs. Possibilities include rain harvesting pond with decking on top, soaking pool, vegetable garden, outdoor dining or plastic ball filled playground for their children. Versatility of façade and courtyard encourage expression of local identity and to provide a unique localized renting