2036 Seventh Street

Having successfully proven that the program could deliver projects on time and on budget with URBANbuild 1-3, and having used projects 2 and 3 to test and experiment with prefabricated building systems, the studio decided the return to more conventional stick-built construction with URBANbuild 4 so design revisions and alterations could continue through the build semester. This allowed the program to return to its original ideal of treating projects as full scale study models.

This year focused on pursuing LEED certification. The project achieved a LEED Silver rating through the provision of an energy-efficient building in compliance with national energy standards and requirements. The house also responded to the city’s new hurricane preparation requirement through the invention of a shutter system using impact-resistant polycarbonate materials. In doing so, it also provided a home with remarkable qualities of diffused natural light.

URBANbuild 4 is the third house constructed in Central City. The year it was built, the community began to truly take notice and pay more attention to what the program was doing in the area. Neighbors of previous projects began to make their way over from a few blocks away to see what the students were building, and the program began to feel more firmly established in the neighborhood. With this fourth house, URBANbuild had fully satisfied its original HUD grant and would now have to seek alternate means of funding to continue.

Project Team

  • Robert Baddour
  • Amanda Brendle
  • Ben Flatau
  • Monica Breziner
  • Nicholas Cecchi
  • Katie Champagne
  • Nick Chan
  • Chad Cramer
  • Susan N. Danielson
  • Shannon Farrell
  • Matt Fox
  • Kevin Garfield
  • Lauren Goetz
  • Royce Evan Gracey
  • Corey Green
  • Meaghan Hartney
  • Matthew Hostetler
  • Colm M. Kennedy
  • Joseph Keppel
  • Peter Kilgust
  • Nicolas Mallet
  • Lauren Martino
  • Suzanne Monaco
  • Emily Orgeron
  • JP Pacelli
  • Marian Prado
  • Marie Richard
  • Gregor Schuller
  • Kevin Tully
  • Karla Valdivia
  • Colin VanWingen
  • Bliss Young

Developing a Body of Work

In the opinion of program director Byron Mouton, URBANbuild 4 was the first project that ran efficiently and smoothly, due in part to the efforts of studios 1-3 and to finally having a small body of work that students could review and visit. That year, students became self-motivated and ambitious—inspired by visiting past projects, they assumed that they could produce that level of work—and since then, every subsequent group of students has aspired to complete a project with even greater resolution than projects from the previous years. As this was the fourth project that the team of professional subcontractors had assisted URBANbuild with, by this time, a system of scheduling and execution had emerged that gave students the opportunity to achieve greater results every year.

“Becoming a homeowner, has pushed me to get more involved in our community – civically speaking. But things don’t change overnight. It takes time to build trust. Relationships. Community.”

– Tami Hills, owner of UB04