The Winnie Cooper

Mid-Century Inspired Home

The design for this black brick modern residence in Lake Success, NY broke the home’s program into two primary segments: active space (which would be used all year long) and passive space (which would only be used occasionally.) By organizing all active program together, the passive spaces of the house could be shut down to save energy when not in use.

Although this design will never be built, it was a tough but valuable learning experience for our young studio and, just like the classic 90s television character Winnie Cooper, this will always be remembered as "the one who got away."

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Core Design Concepts

Conversely, the “shade ribbon” is carefully calibrated to allow the direct sunlight in during New York’s cold winter months. This simple architectural gesture significantly reduces the energy costs and ecological impact of the residence.

A white “ribbon” dances around the home’s facade. However, this 24 inch ribbon does more than just visually connect all zones. In the summer months, when the sun passes high in the sky, the “shade ribbon” also keeps direct sunlight from overheating the home.

The project, located on the border of Nassau and Queens county, was initially denied by the town’s “architecture review board” because the flat roof design which was thought to not match the character of the other nearby homes. However, with the clients support, THE UP STUDIO went before a public hearing to explain the primary concepts. This presentation included the idea that a flat roof provided space for ample, discreet solar panels. Once the intent behind each of the primary design decisions had been presented, the village board unanimously approved the project that same night.

The new home was to provide a ground floor master suite with home office, living, dining, kitchen while the second floor was to provide guest suites for their children who were away, or going away to college. The master wing was placed towards the southwest corner of the property to maximize daylighting while the garage and utility spaces were placed to the northeast of the property. The main massing and program of the home was used to link the opposite program elements with living + kitchen at the ground floor and the bedroom suites occupying the space above. This block was setback from the street to maximize the daylighting opportunities at the rear of the property as well as minimize the impact of the home on the street side. The formal dining area was placed towards the street side with the vertical circulation between the two zones.