R-House, Syracuse, NY by Della Valle Bernheimer and Architecture Research Office Print
Friday, 01 April 2011 07:42

Related ProjectDella Valle + Bernheimer - Artreehoose in New Fairfield, ConnecticutDella Valle + Bernheimer - Artreehoose in New Fairfield, Connecticut
Wedged into a tight lot along Lake Candlewood in New Fairfield, Connecticut, this new home’s form and structure was derived from observations of trees and an adaptation of local building techniques....

R-House_RichardBarnes1Photograph: © Richard BarnesThis prototype residence in Syracuse, New York, is called “R-House.” The design was a competition-winner as part of an initiative to revitalize the blighted Syracuse neighborhood of Westside. R-House presents an affordable, innovative paradigm: minimal- to- net-zero energy consumption embodied in architecture that is meant to nurture the spirit and engage the community as much as it is meant to perform in terms of cost and sustainable design.

R-House is a significant opportunity to demonstrate the successful application of innovative building strategies in a cold climate. The residence was designed to meet the German Passivhaus ultra-low energy standard, utilizing an extremely well-insulated exterior envelope, an efficient recirculating heating and ventilation system, and high performance windows that optimize solar gain.


Recently Posted

C.F. Møller Infuses New life in One of Denmark’s oldest schoolC.F. Møller Infuses New life in One of Denmark’s oldest...
The listed Sølvgade School built in 1847, close to King...
Bates Masi + Architects - House in Montauk, New YorkBates Masi + Architects - House in Montauk, New York
The house occupies a hill in Montauk with a distant...
Denton Corker Marshall  - Melbourne Museum Denton Corker Marshall - Melbourne Museum
The building is one of Melbourne’s recent landmarks, completed over...
3XN’s Museum of Liverpool3XN’s Museum of Liverpool
The new Museum of Liverpool that has just opened on...

Books that we liked



Edited by Lynda Waggoner


R-House_RichardBarnes2Photograph: © Richard Barnes

The scale and form of R-House engage the diversity of existing housing stock. Humble materials such as concrete and wood imbue warmth and integrity. The interior is airy and bright; a two-story tall space is lit by large south-facing windows. The 1,100 square foot plan is designed to grow from a two-bedroom to a three- or four-bedroom house, simply by extending the second floor over the living space.R-House_RichardBarnes3Photograph: © Richard Barnes
The durability and adaptability of the design, as well as the superior energy efficiency, are made affordable due to simplicity of form and modesty of materials. This makes R-House a vital tool for strengthening the physical and social structure of the Westside neighborhood, and for building a resilient community.


This article is part of our coverage of the AIA 2011 Housing Awards. Upon discerning the award, the jury for the awards had the following commentsL "This is an exciting idea. There are such great mass production possibilities. We were so happy to see that a passive house entered. It is strengthened by its highly functional and compact plan. A new slant on sustainability!"

Project credits:

Architect: Della Valle Bernheimer and Architecture Research Office

Owner: Syracuse University School of Architecture and Syracuse Center for Excellence with Home HeadQuarters

Location: Syracuse

Related Articles:

Last Updated on Friday, 20 May 2011 12:28