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ground floor plan 1 Complex Entry 2 courtyard 3 Existing structure 4 Garage 5 porch 6 bedroom 7 closet 8 kitchen

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(opposite page) Removing the ceiling exposed pine trusses. Windows, doorway trim, and flooring, all of longleaf pine, were restored to accentuate the wood grain.

r e s o u r c e s waterproofing and dampproofing :

Tyvek;

metal roofing :

Posey Steel; specialty doors : Pella; wood windows : Weather Shield

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t e x a s

a r c h i t e c t

but use two 2x 6-inch boards with space in between. The result is structure that is rendered lighter, with more visual emphasis on joinery. The porch decking comes to resolution on angle as it meets the kitchen addition, which not only animates the courtyard space but also helps draw attention to the clean profile of the now-exposed adjacent limestone wall. Rogers liked the weathered wood of buildings he saw in Kyoto and chose to clad the small garage with fresh-cut unsealed East Texas cedar to achieve a similar effect. There is an underlying “green” sensibility here and throughout the house, that is inherent, not additive to the design approach. Surplus limestone blocks found on site, which bear the marks of masons’ chisels, were used in the making of the one-foot-thick courtyard wall. Rogers found the other blocks during forays to regional quarries and brought them to Lavaca Street. A plaster crucifix, craft of the previous tenant found during the basement excavation, rests on a small shelf protruding from the interior of the courtyard wall, along with other found objects. The delightful response that Casa 218 engenders reminds us that something underestimated can possess beauty and function if we inquire not only what meaning it had in the past, but also what role it might play in our lives today. Restraint in the treatment of the old house and the lightness with which the new buildings engages the site give Casa 218 an elegant simplicity that sustains a sense of the organic, celebrating how the house has and will transform over time. And yet, Rogers doesn’t require a century-old house for inspiration. His latest project, a 330-sf Cor-ten steel house in Marfa shares a courtyard with an adjacent 560-sf house designed by a friend. Rogers views the project as a chance to make a haven that is connected to the land, with a bit of influence from the nearby work of Donald Judd. The immediate launching point for design was the bits of twisted metal Rogers spotted on the site: “I have great appreciation for remnants.” Laurie Zapalac is an Austin-based design consultant specializing in cultural resource planning.

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Texas Architect May/June 2007: San Antonio  

Texas Architect is the official publication of the Texas Society of Architects, each edition features recently completed projects and other...

Texas Architect May/June 2007: San Antonio  

Texas Architect is the official publication of the Texas Society of Architects, each edition features recently completed projects and other...