the long house
(Finalist Marfa Housing Competition)
Given its remote location and relative isolation, Marfa has a defining relationship with its surrounding desert landscape that shapes its experience of place. It is essential to reinforce this strong link and provide housing that is interwoven with its site. The Long House adopts a flat and horizontal design that preserves a sense of immediacy to its surrounds without sacrificing the needed density.
By hybridizing two different building typologies, the courtyard house and the standalone house, a new kind of housing form is shaped to respond to the peculiarities of Marfa’s cultural, economic, and natural context.
A long, low, linear building divides the sites into a series of open communal spaces – a series of open courts. These spaces, protected by building on three sides, result in semi-private communal areas ideal for shared living, yet remain connected to the street. Rather than an object on the site, the building becomes a thickened line set within, and softly buffered from the street by its surrounding landscape.