Miami, for centuries since its discovery by early explorers, has lured new residents to its shores with the promise paradise in the Tropics. Located on the South Bank of the Miami River, and following the traditions of Tropical Living, this home designed by KI Architecture and Armando Montero R.A. LEED AP, incorporates design ideas that promote healthy living and mitigate Climate Change and Sea Level Rise threats in one of the most vulnerable areas in the Country. Miami and South Florida are often at the center of the Hurricane Track Forecast Cone and seasonal King Tides often flood streets. The resilient design ensures that disruptions due to natural disasters are minimized. The house structure and adjacent outdoor areas are raised above potential and future flood levels. The structure is hardened and protects the home from wind damage, and is capable of withstanding 180+ mph winds, and the home is designs to function off the grid using photovoltaic energy and other green strategies. Other incorporated sustainable strategies include capturing and re-using rainwater, treating sewage on site and reclaiming grey water to irrigate rooftop gardens and landscape, Roof tops not used for PV panels serve as green roofs and recreational decks that allow home vegetable farming even during flooded conditions. The house is also designed to maximize the well-being of the occupants by increasing the quality of air, water, natural lighting, and materials to create an environment that promotes physical and mental health.
The owners of this prewar apartment on the Upper West Side of Manhattan wanted to combine two dark and tightly configured units into a single unified space. StudioLAB was challenged with the task of converting the existing arrangement into a large open three bedroom residence. The previous configuration of bedrooms along the Southern window wall resulted in very little sunlight reaching the public spaces. Breaking the norm of the traditional building layout, the bedrooms were moved to the West wall of the combined unit, while the existing internally held Living Room and Kitchen were moved towards the large South facing windows, resulting in a flood of natural sunlight. Wide-plank grey-washed walnut flooring was applied throughout the apartment to maximize light infiltration. A concrete office cube was designed with the supplementary space which features walnut flooring wrapping up the walls and ceiling. Two large sliding Starphire acid-etched glass doors close the space off to create privacy when screening a movie. High gloss white lacquer millwork built throughout the apartment allows for ample storage. LED Cove lighting was utilized throughout the main living areas to provide a bright wash of indirect illumination and to separate programmatic spaces visually without the use of physical light consuming partitions. Custom floor to ceiling Ash wood veneered doors accentuate the height of doorways and blur room thresholds. The master suite features a walk-in-closet, a large bathroom with radiant heated floors and a custom steam shower. An integrated Vantage Smart Home System was installed to control the AV, HVAC, lighting and solar shades using iPads.