Affordable, Custom Homes For The Middle Class

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The infill structure measures only 975-sf while still offering a contemporary design 

February 03, 2016

The Spitzhäuschen, built in 1417, offers an early look at the style The Office of Jonathan Tate is experimenting with. Photo Credit: Berthold Werner, Wikimedia Commons

A new homebuilding experiment being undertaken by architect Jonathan Tate and developer Charles Rutledge is looking to turn underused, unbuildable lots into the perfect space for entry-level residences. Their Starter Home program will target mid-range home ownership, a segment that has been ignored recently, Fast Company reports.

Because this is an exercise in infill building, each house is designed with a custom, contemporary look and then dropped into the lot like a Tetris piece. Their first life-sized Tetris piece is 3106 St. Thomas, a slender, modern 975-sf home sandwiched between an industrial warehouse and an ordinary duplex in the Irish Channel neighborhood in New Orleans.

The Starter Home concept looks to capitalize on a seemingly shifting value system for today’s buyers. Many people find city living in a unique, customized home, with access to public transportation and amenities, to be more desirable than heading out to the suburbs and settling down in a cookie-cutter house. The issue when it comes to city living, obviously, is space and cost. This experiment looks to resolve both issues without cutting any corners.

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