“The Professor’s House,” a small, sustainable, age-in-place house overlooking Morgan Creek in Chapel Hill, has been selected for the Fall 2017 Modapalooza Tour on Sept. 16, sponsored by North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH).
Chapel Hill architect Arielle Condoret Schechter designed the house for a retired professor of Native American Studies. A widow now, she wanted to downsize from her 3,200-sq. ft.house and live with her dog in a modern, age-in-place house in a quiet, wooded neighborhood in Chapel Hill.
She contacted Schechter because she’d heard about the Micropolis Houses, a collection of modern “tiny house” plans Schechter designed that range from 150 to 1,500 square feet and can be customized to meet specific buyers’ needs and preferences. In this case, the professor wanted to add a third bedroom/office and an extra bath to the Micropolis plan she chose.
“A small house meant she could have things like a swimming pool, a Japanese soaking tub, and choose nicer elements for her money,” Schechter said.
The final design is nearly half the size of the professor’s previous house. Yet at only a little more than 1,600 heated square feet– almost 1,000 sq. ft. less than the average American house, which is now 2,500 sq. ft. — it packs in all of the professor’s spatial needs in an open, fluid floor plan with age-in-place functionality. Schechter calls it a “Custom-opolis.”
The Professor’s House is one of seven houses designed by architects on this year’s Modapalooza Tour, including projects by Frank Harmon, Phil Szostak, Tina Govan, Jason Hart, and in situ studio.
The Professor’s House is also in the running for a 2017 George Matsumoto Prize, which recognizes excellence in North Carolina modernist residential design sponsored by NCMH. Winners are selected by both a professional jury and public voting. (Public voting at https://ncmhcompetitions.squarespace.com ends July 20.)