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Joe Fletcher

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Designing Net-Zero: California's New Models for Integrated Housing

Few places have embraced sustainable design practices like California. Experiencing dramatic droughts, wildfires and environmental issues, the state has started to create new policies and initiatives to promote environmentally-conscious design solutions. From eco-districts and water management strategies to net-zero building projects, the Golden State is making strides to reshape its future. Forming long-term visions and procedures through the lens of physical resource consumption, California is working to better integrate its economic development plans with sustainable building methods.

Courtesy of Turnbull Griffin Haesloop Architects© Nic LehouxCourtesy of Klopf© Joe Fletcher+ 15

“Architecture is Like Writing a Song”: In conversation with Rick Joy

Vladimir Belogolovsky speaks with American architect Rick Joy about his early inclinations towards architecture, what kind of architecture he likes to visit, and about designing his buildings as instruments. 

Catalina House / Studio Rick Joy. Image © Wayne FujiSun Valley House / Studio Rick Joy. Image © Joe FletcherPrinceton Transit Hall and Market / Studio Rick Joy. Image © Jeff Goldberg / ESTOBayhouse / Studio Rick Joy. Image © Jeff Goldberg / ESTO+ 18

Softie Interior Renovation / OPA Architects

© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher+ 16

How To Use and Reuse Chimneys in Architecture

Francis D. K. Ching [1] characterizes a chimney as an “incombustible vertical structure, which contains a duct through which smoke and gases from a fire or furnace are pushed outwards and through which an air current is created.” While its pipes can be hidden in walls or other structures, the chimney top usually remains prominent in order to transfer dangerous gases from the inside out without dirtying the interior or harming the health of the occupants. Being vertical elements, there are chimneys that become major landmarks in the urban landscape, especially in industrial projects. At the time of drawing, deciding on the “weight” that the chimney will have in a project is essential. At Casa Milá, for example, Gaudí crowns the building in sinuous and curvy sculptural chimneys. In other cases, the solemnity of the building aesthetic is mirrored in its chimney, whereas in others, the architects render the chimney as hidden as possible. Recently, too, many chimneys have been refurbished for new uses or to accommodate new cleaner technologies. Whether it takes a prominent role or is hidden from view, see below some chimney design tips and possibilities of use.

AIA California Announces 2020 Residential Design Awards

The American Institute of Architects California (AIA CA) has announced the recipients of the 2020 Residential Design Awards. With nearly 100 projects submitted, the jury recognized ten projects with honor, merit and leading edge awards. As AIA California states, the jury took many aspects into consideration, looking for "exceptional design" that represents all that California architecture has to offer.

Dawnridge by Field Architecture Inc. Image © Joe FletcherWalk-Street House by ras-a studio. Image © Joe FletcherWalk-Street House by ras-a studio. Image © Joe Fletcher222 Taylor by David Baker Architects. Image © Bruce Damonte+ 6

Translucence House / Fougeron Architecture

© Joe Fletcher
© Joe Fletcher

© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher+ 29

Architecture and Collective Living: 50 of Mexico's Most Cutting Edge Apartment Complexes

Las Terrazas Building/ Landa + Martínez Arquitectos. Image © Agustín Landa RuilobaMO47 Building / ZD+A. Image © Jaime NavarroHigh Park / Rojkind Arquitectos. Image © Mariana GarcíaLa Esmeralda / JSa. Image © LGM Studio - Luis Gallardo+ 51

Climate is one of the key factors to take into consideration when designing a space. Of course, this can present a challenge, especially when dealing with extreme climates and the need for insulating materials that are able to adapt to a wide range of conditions. Luckily, for architects operating in Mexico, the country's privileged climate facilitates the creation of microclimates and spaces that blur the line between interior and exterior.   

Tack Barn / Faulkner Architects

© Hammond and Company© Hammond and Company© Joe Fletcher© Hammond and Company+ 23

  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  1418
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2017
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: 12th Avenue Iron, Rohl, Duravit, Dynamic Steel Arte, Shaws of Darwen, +1

Lookout House / Faulkner Architects

© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher+ 36

  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  7833
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2018
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: AutoDesk, Enscape, Lumion

House of Light / Rangr Studio

© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Matthew Millman© Joe Fletcher+ 24

Berkeley, United States

Three Chimney House / TW Ryan Architecture

© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher+ 31

Charlottesville, United States
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  5800 ft²
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2020
  • Manufacturers Brands with products used in this architecture project
    Manufacturers: Loewen, Vola, Baldwin, Old Texas Brick, Pivot Door Company, +1

The Pavilion / Feldman Architecture

© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher+ 19

San José, United States

The Sanctuary House / Feldman Architecture

© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher© Joe Fletcher+ 25

Palo Alto, United States

Polanco House / Studio Rick Joy

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Mexico City, Mexico

Best Houses of 2019

© Quang Tran© Simon Wilson with Amelia Holmes© Peter Eckert© Shigeo Ogawa+ 51

More than 5.000 architecture projects were published in ArchDaily this year.  Year after year, we curate hundreds of residential projects, and as we know our readers love houses, we compiled a selection of the most visited residential projects published on the site. 

Set in various locations around the world, in urban, rural, mountain and beach landscapes; a variety of structural designs, from traditional masonry to the most technological prefabricated systems; from small dwellings to large houses and materials such as concrete, wood, and bricks as the most used. We also found their design and typology solutions were very much aligned with their specific settings and all of them share a strong dialogue between the house and nature, whether it is its direct surroundings or the introduction of green into a more condensed urban setting. 

This selection of 50 houses highlights the most visited examples during these twelve months and, according to our readers, were the most attractive in innovation, construction techniques, and design challenges. Check them out below: