RACo Team Lends a Hand with Habitat for Humanity

 Matt Fornaro, Taylor Medlin, Lauren Woodard, Claire Craven

Matt Fornaro, Taylor Medlin, Lauren Woodard, Claire Craven

On Saturday, August 12th, members of the Raleigh Architecture Company design and construction teams gathered with the Catholic Coalition of Wake County to kick-off the faith organization's 8th home in the Crosstowne neighborhood, located off Cross Link and Garner Rd. in South Raleigh. 

Work started at 7:30am in the Habitat Construction Warehouse, where nearly 40 volunteers systematically assembled and loaded walls onto a trailer headed for the site of Habitat Partner Kiara Joe's future five-bedroom house. Kiara herself was on site to hammer the first nail, and many more following. Habitat partners build and purchase their homes. Throughout the day, volunteers had the opportunity not only to hear Kiara's story and celebrate the fact  that she and her two twin sons will soon have a home to call their own, along with her mother, brother and sister, but see the smile on her face as she and other volunteers lifted the walls into place.  By noon, the exterior walls were raised and work to erect interior walls had begun. The entire process of building her home will be 10 to 12 weeks. 

Our team ended the day energized and grateful for the strong community that still makes providing affordable housing in Wake County a priority. If you are interested in volunteering for a Habitat build in Wake County, we encourage you to visit their website.

 

"HUNGRY NECK" RECEIVES GOLDEN STEWARDSHIP DEVELOPMENT AWARD

 
 

By Christy Perrin, Water Resources Research Institute

 

Raleigh– Four land development projects were honored during the seventh annual awards ceremony for the Greater Triangle Stewardship Development Awards Program (GTSDA). These awards recognize development projects in the triangle that go above and beyond state and local requirements to incorporate innovative environmental protections and provide a model for green development practices in the triangle. This year’s winners included Chatham Park Medical Office Building #2 in Chatham County, Wooten Meadow Park Master Plan in Raleigh, and NC State’s Talley Student Union in Raleigh, with the highest honors going to the Hungry Neck Residence in Raleigh.

The 2017 awards marked the first time applications were opened to single family homes. The awards ceremony was held at the JC Raulston Arboretum on May 4.

An interdisciplinary expert panel of judges evaluated the projects for achievement in these areas:

  • Natural resource assessment
  • Water quality protection
  • Wildlife Habitat Protection
  • Vegetation Protection and Enhancement
  • Green Building
  • Integration with the Community
  • Long-Term Management and Maintenance
  • Community Outreach and Education

Shelly Epps Parker, Sustainable Travel Services Manager for Go Triangle, spoke first about sustainable transportation, followed by a keynote address from Larry Band, PhD, Director for the UNC Institute for the Environment. Awards were then presented to recipients by GTSDA Board members.

This urban infill residence in Raleigh, pictured above, was awarded the highest award, a Gold Stewardship Development Award. The project demonstrated exceptional achievement on all applicable GTSDA criteria. Raleigh Architecture Company worked closely with the homeowners to create a purposefully sustainable home that was sited to protect and enjoy onsite trees, includes a geothermal heating and cooling system, energy efficient choices such as galvanized metal roofing to reduce solar heat gain and natural lighting, permeable paving to reduce stormwater runoff, and a cistern used to harvest rainwater for reuse in flushing toilets, washing clothes, and irrigation. Judges were particularly appreciative of the homeowners’ use of stormwater cost share funding from the City of Raleigh to voluntarily reduce the stormwater running off their property.

THE RALEIGH ARCHITECTURE Co. WINS AIA NC HONORS AWARD FOR “EDENTWINS”

 

Two modern, urban-infill houses designed in tandem, side-by-side.
 

When architects enter custom-designed housing in awards competitions, they enter either single-family houses or multi-dwelling projects: multiple, separate housing units that are contained within one building or several buildings within one complex.

For the 2015 AIA NC Design Awards, The Raleigh Architecture Company (RACo) did neither. Partners Craig Kerins, AIA, and Robby Johnston, AIA, entered “Edentwins” — two single-family urban-infill houses that they designed concurrently and built on adjoining lots in downtown Raleigh.

On September 26, Johnston and Kerins received an Honor Award for their innovative duo from the North Carolina Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA NC) during an awards ceremony held at the 21c Museum Hotel in Durham.

“Edentwins challenge standard single-family infill development by sharing space, resources, and mutual values with each other,” said Johnston, who lives in one of the award-winning houses with his wife and young daughters.

Edentwins are perched above East Edenton Street, a three-lane, one-way thoroughfare that connects residential neighborhoods to the east with downtown Raleigh. The site plan is organized around a shared central courtyard that visually and spatially ties the houses — and the families who occupy them — together. The courtyard provides outdoor play space for the kids and fresh-air entertainment space for the parents.

According to the RACo partners, small buildable areas on the lots and tight zoning restrictions influenced the houses’ compact linear footprints and projecting forms. Front porches, shaded by the cantilevered second floors, link the homes to the community, reinforce the existing vernacular, and maintain how houses there address the sidewalk and street.

Conceived of as “fraternal twins,” according to the partners, the homes share common traits yet retain their own identities. For example, golden-toned North Carolina cypress adds a note of warmth to the exteriors of both flat-roofed houses, although 556 combines the wood with the rusty patina of Corten® steel while 554 uses reclaimed slate from an old house razed in a nearby neighborhood as outdoor cladding.

The award-winning “Edentwins” are the first houses in a cluster of homes the RACo team is completing in the old inner-city neighborhood known as Hungry Neck North.

 

BUILDING RALEIGH AS FEATURED ON BIT & GRAIN

 
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We were recently featured in Bit & Grain, North Carolina's premier digitial magazine dedicated to storytelling in and around south. We talk about the state of modern architecture in Raleigh as well as some of our most recent articles. Below is an exccerpt and the link to the full article.

Great opportunity and responsibility comes with such growth. But many of the urban problems described in A is for Architecture — traffic congestion, insufficient mass transportation and pollution — are current issues for Raleigh. The question of how to keep Raleigh liveable and affordable for everyone was central to this fall’s Raleigh City Council election. It’s a question architects Craig Kerins and Robby Johnston think about all the time.

Read more of the article here and other great articles at www.bitandgrain.com

 

CURBED.COM: “HOW MODERN STYLE AND MATCHING BUILDINGS RE-ENERGIZED A RALEIGH NEIGHBORHOOD”

 

By Patrick Sisson 10.22.15

Instagram can be an endless font of inspirations and introductions, from new fashion concepts to undiscovered travel destinations. For architect Robby Johnston of The Raleigh Architecture Company, the visual app turned out to be a great way to find a new neighbor.

“A friend was house hunting a few years ago and posting images on Instagram, and as I clicked through, I found a couple doing the same thing nearby,” he says. “I looked at their account—they were well traveled, with interesting careers—and thought, ‘maybe they’re crazy enough to work with us.'”

Crazy isn’t always the operative word a homeowner uses when looking for a new neighbor, or the quality an architect seeks out when hunting for a new client. But then again, Johnston wasn’t a typical architect looking to sell a standard home. Along with partner Craig Kerins, Johnston was in the midst of developing a matching pair of modernist homes in Raleigh’s Hungry Neck neighborhood…READ MORE.

 

INHABITAT: “TWO COMPACT MODERN HOMES FILL CHALLENGING EMPTY LOTS IN AN OLD URBAN NEIGHBORHOOD”

 

By Kristine Lofgren
 

Two new compact houses introduce a modern, sustainable, infill-housing model to an old, urban neighborhood, while providing two young families with open, efficient homes perfectly suited to their individual lifestyles. Each home blends in with the neighborhood, but features a bevy of sustainable features, like locally-sourced recycled exterior materials, plenty of natural light and clever design that merges the interior of the homes with the world outside.

The homes were built to carefully blend into the neighborhood. For example, front porches have cantilevered second floors that cover the front porches are typical of every home in the old neighborhood, so these homes have the same feature. And because the houses were designed in tandem, the homeowners can share limited outdoor space between the two slim lots. The Raleigh Architecture Company (RACo), a design-build firm in Raleigh, NC, acted as developer, architect, contractor, and, for one house, owner. READ MORE…