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Student Teams:

Team 1

Team 2

Team 3

Affordable Concrete Homes

Undergraduate Option Studio, Fall 2023

Instructor: Pablo Moyano Fernández, Assistant Professor in Architecture

Affordable Housing is traditionally defined as households consuming no more than 30% of their income on housing. However, this measure only considers house purchase prices, ignoring other associated costs such as maintenance, utilities, property taxes, insurance and transportation costs. This studio aims to explore the tectonics aspects of concrete, its versatility and ability to contribute to mitigate some of the affordable housing factors as a performative construction material in particular applicable to building envelopes.

The studio participated in the competition Los Angeles affordable housing challenge, seeking for alternative affordable housing solutions that are adaptable and capable of accommodating resident’s needs, prioritizing affordability without compromising quality or sustainability. During the first phase, students developed a conceptual building enclosure for a single space. The next phase consisted of materializing such enclosure in concrete using non-conventional formwork techniques that responded effectively to the initial design. The last phase included the design of a housing unit/s by systematically using the proposed concrete enclosure system. The hands-on nature of the studio exposed students to the tactile exploration of materials within conceptual and technical frameworks as a way to legitimate their design decisions while acquiring a comprehensive understanding of building tectonics.


Team 1: Cindy Wang and Orion Strayer
Team 2: Will Lay and Leah Fontenot
Team 3: Kristen Wong and Flora Chen


Moyano Fernandez, P. I. "Learning via making, a hands-on approach". Full Paper. 2023 Building Technology Education Society Conference. The Cosanti Foundation + Kennesaw State University, Phoenix AZ, June 2023

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