Rose Lee's House

Rose Lee's House, designed and built for a family in Footwash, Alabama, is the result of two semester’s work of the 2nd Year Studio in 2008-2009. At that time, the purpose of the 2nd Year Studio was to investigate contemporary forms of rural dwellings. Rose Lee's House focused on experimentation of the Expandable House. The house expands and grows by need, and over time: it is based in the traditional local farmhouse strategy and its design is driven by the client's priorities, necessities, and lifestyle.

The Expandable House responds to the transient nature and demographic of the contemporary family. The goal is to propose a design and building strategy capable of providing a flexible home open to different variations and future expansions. The courtyard brings natural light, weather, and landscape into the center of the dwelling, together with privacy and intimacy, and during the hot west Alabama months, becomes the 'outdoor living room'.

Rose Lee’s House, also called the ‘Cedar House’, is wrapped in cedar, a resinous Alabama tree, traditionally used because of its water resistant qualities. The house has a long horizontal porch addressing the street and a square patio facing the back yard. The porch is dedicated to Rose’s social life while the courtyard protects the family’s privacy. The two spaces help the house environmentally: the porch shades the building and the courtyard offers a mild outdoor space.  The 1,200-square -foot dwelling has been designed with a core volume known as ‘The Machine’ with a perpendicular ‘Expansion Wing’ on the west side of the site. ‘The Machine’ provides the essential family needs: a main bedroom, a live-dine room, kitchen, and bathroom. The ‘Expansion Wing’ provides two bedrooms. 

Images and Plans