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TOO BIG, BORING, OR UGLY Lane Kendig Lane Kendig, inc.

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Presentation on theme: "TOO BIG, BORING, OR UGLY Lane Kendig Lane Kendig, inc."— Presentation transcript:

1 TOO BIG, BORING, OR UGLY Lane Kendig Lane Kendig, inc.

2 1950s - Little Boxes

3 2003 - Big Boxes

4 MAJOR PROBLEMS Monopoly Houses Monotony Too Big House Tear Downs

5 MONOTONY Lack of Interest and Deadening Sameness Caused By: –Identical to Similar Floor Plans on Adjoining Lots –Little to Distinguish Elevations –Repetitive Roofs –Common Building Heights –Building Masses or Volumes Similar

6 Monotony


8 MONOPOLY LIKE HOUSES They Look Like the Houses in a Monopoly Set…A Cheap Plastic Box –No Detailing Particularly on Sides and Rear –Overhangs Absent - No Shadow Lines –Punch Out Windows –Blocky Building Masses –Similar Heights along Street Front


10 4 Monopoly Set Homes

11 Blank Wall Punch Out Windows Lack of Detail No Eaves Features of Monopoly Box House

12 FALSE FRONTS Architectural Details, Window and Door Trim, Shutters, etc. on Front Only Varied Façade on Front Only Masonry – One Brick Deep on Front

13 House #1 Front Window Trim R oof Orientation Trim Change in Plane

14 House #1 Rear Lack of Window Trim Horizontal Siding Blank wall

15 THE PROBLEM’S CAUSE Production Builders Mass Production  Repetition Narrow Target Market  Similar Floor Plans and Size Maximize Size and Cut Back on Detailing

16 MONOPOLY BOX SOLUTIONS Enrich the Palette by Adding Details Eaves 360° Architecture Windows and Doors Blank walls Garages Landscaping

17 REQUIRE EAVES Eaves Provide a Shadow Line that Articulates the House. Requirements –Eaves on All Sides –Minimum 12 Inches -- Encourage More –Insure Eaves Relate to Historic Styles

18 Require Eaves

19 Inadequate Eaves – 4”

20 Bungalow – Eaves and 360° Details

21 Partial Eaves Eaves tacked on Front Elevation No Eaves on Side

22 DETAILING Window Trim Door Trim Architectural Details or Features –Entryway –Patterns with Materials or Trim –Bay Windows –Dormers

23 Punched Out WindowsWindows Trimmed Simplest of New England Box had Trim

24 Rich Detailing Roof is Trim Roof Articulates Facade Detailing

25 Lack of Detail

26 Rich Details on Little Boxes

27 Blank Walls Stupid Windows Large Blank Wall Expanse Utilities

28 Windows Aligned Garage Door Siding Large Eaves Articulated Walls Good No Trim Windows and Detailing

29 FALSE FRONTS The House Front is Dressed Up The Rear and Sides as Cheap as Possible Community Suffers –Rear Views of Monopoly - Like Houses –Looks Cheap –Neighbors Get the Bad View

30 Front ElevationRear and Side Elevation

31 False Front – Rich Detail

32 One Brick Deep Masonry Window Alignment Trim No Trim

33 360 Degree Detailing Simple Painted Trim

34 360° Materials and Trim Blank Wall

35 GARAGES Narrow Lots – Garage Takes Up Over 60% of the House Frontage –3 & 4 Car Garages Impacting Wider Lots Complicates Architectural Solution to Monotony –Insignificant Portion of Façade to Work With –Garages All Look About the Same

36 Excessive Garages Garage taking 50% of House Width and 40% House Width

37 GARAGE SOLUTIONS Limit portion of house occupied by garage Garage Location Garage Type Alley Mews

38 Rear Garage Hidden

39 Side Load Front Front Load Garage Treatments

40 Side Load Garage – 85 ft. Lot Width Detailing on Garage

41 Side Load Orientation Three Side Loads Facing Same Direction

42 Alley Access 40 foot lot

43 Front Access 40 foot lot

44 Mews Alley Public Street Mews Alley Access

45 Mews Garages to Rear on Alley

46 Blank Walls A Recent Trend is Leaving One or More Side Elevations Nearly Windowless –Same Problem as Commercial Buildings – Ugly –Less Light in Interior of Unit –Utilities

47 The Blank Wall Useless Window Award False Front

48 Blank Walls Stupid Windows Large Blank Wall Expanse Utilities

49 $800,000 Blank Wall

50 Blank Wall and Garage

51 Blank Wall Treatment Dummy Windows

52 Blank Wall Treatment Dummy Windows Poor Windows Alignment

53 MONOTONY CODE Limit Repetition of a Model Type Criteria for Certifying Model Elevations as Different –Roofs, Height, Pitch, Orientation –Porches –Architectural Features –Windows

54 Identical Floor Plans

55 Additions Over Time

56 Luxury Boxes From Road Near Identical Masses

57 Similar Roof Lines No Details on Rear Windows 2nd Level Decks Approaching Units

58 Luxury Boxes Street Face

59 Monotony Code Control Area

60 Identical Floor Plans

61 TYPES OF MONOTONY CONTROLS Mandatory Controls –Eaves –360 Degree Trim and Materials Menu Approach –Roof Pitch, Height, Orientation –Porches –Architectural Detail

62 Model Approval Sheet

63 Different Roof Heights and Pitches Garage Types – Front or Side Load Side Load Garage Front Load Garage Architectural Feature

64 Roof Orientation Roof Heights and Pitches Porch Styles Façade Areas and Roof Areas

65 Monotony Code Result Roof Shape Roof Orientation Overhangs 360 Masonry

66 Garage Types Masonry Detailing

67 Narrow Lot Variable Lot Width Wide Lot

68 Vary Height One Story Two Story

69 Different Floor Plans and Garage Placement

70 Porches, Roofs, 360° Details Porches or Not Dormers Roof Lines

71 Failed Attempt Materials Divide Neo Nothingness – Too Busy

72 Material Breaks at Building Wing

73 LANDSCAPING Greenery Hides a Multitude of Sins Green Volume Counters Building Volume Even in Winter, Bare Trees Have Significant Impact – Altered Scale

74 Trees Shelter and Screen

75 Trees Arch Over Houses and Reduce Apparent Scale

76 Lot Landscaping Strategy 1920’s LandscapingModern Foundation Planting

77 Foundation Planting One Small Screening Tree

78 Wooded Front Yard Screens and Dominates House in Scale

79 Foundation Planting Displays Full Mass New Street Planting

80 Tree Preservation Winter Tree Cover Effective Screen Road Layout Focuses View

81 Lot Edge Landscaping Screens and Reduces Apparent Scale Allows Views and Screens

82 BUILDING PLACEMENT Lining Buildings up on the Front Setback Line –Good for Urban Enclosure –Bad for Monotony Mandate Staggered Building Pads –Perspective Alters Building Scale –More Difficult to See Similarity –Landscaping More Effective

83 Variable Lot Setback

84 Shallow Setback Deep Setback Building Pads Define Setback

85 Grade Change Alters Relationship Foundation Roof Peak

86 Grade Change 2.5 feet

87 Grade Change 3.5 feet

88 Large Grade Change

89 TOO BIG HOUSE House is too big for lot. House is so big that it alters community character. National trend to larger houses. Blatent display of how much one paid for the house.

90 Too Big Luxury Boxes


92 Relative Scale 2 Story3 Story Moderate Building Volume Large Building Volume Small PorchPorch, Stairway, 3rd floor deck

93 Too High Extravagant Bulky Details Taste ? – Display Size and Bulk

94 Building Coverage (BC)Floor Area Ratio (FAR) Floor Area responds to multiple floors.


96 LVR BVR LVR SVR BVR Site Volume Ratio (SVR) LVR-BVR = SVR

97 The Not So Big House Design and livability over size. Display good design. High quality materials rather than bulk. Materials selected to blend.

98 Materials that Blend with Environment Landscaping to relate to site Quality architectural Statement


100 TEAR DOWNS A too big house in an existing neighborhood of smaller scale units. Destroys the character of the neighborhood. Creates a need for variances Gentrification



103 THE PROBLEM Neighborhood is very desirable. Homes are out of date and need upgrades. Economics is driving the problem. –The land values support the cost of acquisition, demolition, and new structure. Community is not unanimous in opposition. –Some oppose on Character others support on greed.

104 SOLUTIONS Same tools as the too big house. Early Identification –Identify before economics has created teardown conditions –Allow for logical room additions while maintaining character. –Less controversy because problem has not yet become an issue – can be done in normal zoning review.

105 Standard Bungalow Appearance

106 Expanded to the Rear

107 PREPARE FOR TEARDOWNS Identify small house neighborhoods before they have been discovered 1950s Bungalows Cape Cods Identify current zoning building volumes Develop expansion strategies Adopt new standards

108 Questions ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

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