This house for a single professional demonstrates how a small, modern residence can serve as an example that quality architecture can happen at any scale and at any budget. Located in the established Fletcher Place neighborhood of Indianapolis, the home occupies a narrow 33’ wide in-fill lot bordered by a public street and alleys on three of its boundaries. Directed by the homeowner’s desire for a compact and efficient layout, the floor plan utilizes a concise, stacked circulation spine to maximize livable space.
Of paramount importance was the opportunity to integrate the modern exterior aesthetic of the home into the traditional character of the neighborhood. The design parti employs an efficient 2-story masonry cube form flanked by single story, single pitched roof volumes to echo the scale and vocabulary of the adjacent neighboring properties. A horizontal datum of floor, porch floor and roof lines visually connect and nestle the home into its environment. The covered porch provides a nostalgic link between neighbors.
Horizontal cedar cladding is used on the endcaps of the single-story volumes that front the pedestrian sidewalk and exterior living areas. This strategic material placement provides an understood and comfortable aesthetic for both the homeowner and the continuity of the existing neighborhood fabric. In addition to natural wood siding and dark masonry, the exterior palette is completed with the integration of ver tical metal siding serving as a defining framework for the building form but also as a durable and maintenance free solution along the alley edge. At the rear of the home, the garage is detached from the residence to create outdoor living space and rear porch. The separated garage with a glass overhead door provides a visual connection for the avid Vespa enthusiast homeowner.
The masonry is carried into the interior and utilized as a finish material to strengthen the “cube” massing design. In accordance with the homeowner’s aesthetic, the remainder of the main living areas are starkly contrasted by a simple material assemblage. Dark walnut portals allow egress between the entry and vertical circulation of the living spaces. An open riser stair implementing raw steel angles and sealed timberstrand wood beam treads, serves as a feature design element allowing for a visual connection from the main entry, while permitting the filtration of natural light.
A straightforward design direction coupled with the understanding of a limited project budget serves as the basis for this collection of crisp details, and attention to craft, creating a contemporary residence, that while modest in footprint, provides an efficient and comfortable respite. A thoughtful in-fill urban dwelling of its time and place, strengthening community through architecture.