Case Study House Program, Problems and solutions – Spaces and spatial diversity

Continuity :

Continuity is a widely used theme in the Case Study Houses. It can be of two types: continuity of living spaces and continuity between interior and exterior spaces.

Continuity of the living spaces

  • The partition between the public areas of life and individual spaces have been clearly defined, we note that in most cases public areas are treated and lived only as a single space. This uniqueness makes them user-friendly.
  • This spatial continuity does not necessarily pass through complete transparency of space but rather by treating its fluidity.
  • Paradoxically, in Cases Study Houses, the issue of the treatment of the living areas is to successfully occupy and qualify the while maintaining their full fluency.
  • In most cases, the space is occupied by objects that are generally different services or facilities: fireplace, kitchen units, storage units etc … These objects have a completely floating position in space. Sometimes suspended, they do not touch the ceiling or the limits of space. Although it irremovable, he conferred the status of their furniture. Their positions to structure informal space delimiting: circulations, living, living room etc …

Example: CSH # 22 of Koenig # 18 of Ellwood

Continuity between indoor and outdoor spaces

  • Systematically, the spaces of the villas are worked to rendering uncertain, or even erase completely disintegrate the boundary between inside and outside.
  • This continuity is obtained by different treatments. This is achieved by processing the material of course, but also by different spatial treatments.
  • Most times it is the creation of spaces to the statutes completely ambiguous and unexpected: Exterior or interior parts gardens, courtyards … These spaces usually have a spatial quality and use unusual.

Examples: HSC Soriano # 25 of Killingworth, # 21 Koenig etc …

Covered & uncoverd, closed & unclosed :

The systematic use of a frame structure allows absolute decoupling components of the different elements the villa. The roof, the fence and the structure can operate completely independently of each other. The architects of the program make use of this freedom radically new and original way. They differ on this point completely European architects of the same era that have become used to treat it differently..

A floating roof …

  • The roof is usually the first element of the Case Study Houses.
  • It exists by itself as an independent single element. If the frame system allows a system of modular panels, the roof remains monolith. It is most often the unifying element of the project.
  • While the shape of the villas can be very cut, roofing in general keeps shape and simple geometry, it is always flat. This flat slab may however breakthrough in some places, thus occasionally causing light.
  • Independence and importance are highlighted in different ways. This can be done through the use of contents. It may also underlined by great advances outside. These advanced mitigate the perception that one has of the facade. This is especially true as the roof of the Case Study Houses are usually very close to the ground, the ground floor villas beings. Finally, it makes great use openings transom further strengthening effect this separation and independence of the roof.

Examples: CSH # 16 of Ellwood # 22 of Koenig. / Counter example: # 20 Buff, Straub & Hensman

A structure that rhythm and releases

  • However, the slight fence and released is used here so completely original. The use made by the closing opposes a European vision (Le Corbusier …). The latter deals with the released end of the structure by detaching while remaining a hard element. It comes freely separating the spaces between the structural points.

Closings as screens …

  • If the roof is designed as a completely flat element and monolith, fence system, on the contrary is always completely free and lightweight.
  • Fences are treated here as screens. Lightweight, they hang or cling to the structure. They come and hide in full or in part spaces.
  • These fences are heterogeneous and separated.
  • Heterogeneous, as the Case Study Houses are working on a whole range of variable screens. This panel has a multitude of qualities of materials and areas: opaque, translucent, textile, smooth, textured etc …
  • Dissociated since the closing of the villas can be stripped in several layers, each bearing a closing quality: Climate fence does not necessarily coincide with the visual fence or light etc …
  • The roof dissociation – fence is the source of all the spatial richness of Case Study Houses. The house always extends by a multitude of spaces with multiple and different spatial qualities. These spaces are qualified in their uses, partitions and structure the project in its composition.

<Previous pageNext page >