Square Root Architecture + Design, Ltd.
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C3Prefab: v1.1

Second Iteration of Popular C3Prefab Home

Similar in design with its predecessor, C3Prefab v1.0, this second iteration of the C3Prefab line of homes is also constructed in the West Town neighborhood of Chicago. While v1.0 is constructed utilizing prefab modular components, v1.1 is constructed with a structural insulated panel (SIP) system. This form of prefab, often generically referred to as a ‘flat-pack’ system is used to construct the exterior walls and roof to form a highly insulated thermally broken building envelope with minimal opportunities for air infiltration. Although this form of prefab construction requires more onsite construction, this hybrid approach takes advantage of the better qualities of both prefab and onsite construction, and minimizes transportation and erection costs of the prefab units.

The form of v1.1 is the same as v1.0 with a series of linear rectangular volumes that shift along an axis. This allows the design and construction to remain simple without being simplistic, creating opportunities for material changes and unique spatial pockets on the exterior while defining interior space. Central to the design is an open stair adjacent to a private exterior courtyard, which floods the interior with natural light and ventilation. Two key modifications to v1.1 from the original version are a dramatic two-story living space on the first floor due to eliminating a second floor bedroom, and a full finished basement with in-floor radiant heating. All mechanicals are organized to one side of the building to maximize construction efficiency and allow the remainder of the floor plan to remain open and flexible. Two roof decks are accessible from the main stair and provide an area for leisure amongst a vegetated green space. Exterior materials include corrugated corten metal siding, painted cement board panels, and reclaimed barn wood siding. Interior finishes include walnut flooring along with low-VOC paints, water based finishes, and a custom kitchen.

Along with contributions to site water management, water usage reduction, energy conservation, and indoor air quality this project achieves a high level of sustainability within a modest budget. High-efficiency mechanical systems are complemented by renewable energy provided by a solar thermal panel system. This project received EnergyStar and Indoor AirPlus certifications. This home was third-party tested for a HERS (Home Energy Rating System) score of 43, meaning that its energy efficiency is 57% better than a comparable standard built home.

All C3Prefab homes are available for customization to fit the lifestyle and budget of a potential homeowner.

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