Lover’s Lane Residence. This single-family home explores the relationship between the longevity of structures and their ever-changing uses. The loose fit between experience and building is highly evident in any domestic program. In the short term, our daily routine requires spaces to multitask, from rest to work and from pleasure to chore. In the long term, individual needs change as our bodies grow older, while families take many forms; they expand, move away, return, and even fracture. Lovers Lane Residence accepts the prevailing market trend for a three-bedroom home with a two-car garage and guest room, the prerequisite for a home loan. But within that framework, the house is laid out so that it can transform over time.
Learning from precedents such as the movable walls in the Schröder House or the ever-transforming cabinetry in the Maison de Verre, Lovers Lane Residence proposes transforming a home from free plan to poché throughout each day, and from one house to multiple units over the course of its life. Easy-to-operate, oversized floor-to-ceiling doors are detailed so they blend into the walls; or from another perspective, walls swing or slide in the manner of doors. The distinction between open and closed is purposefully erased. As planes move they change how spaces are defined, oscillating from free plan to cellular configuration. The bathroom cores are designed with permanency in mind as the house changes around them. Not unlike Philip Johnson’s Glass House, these are immovable solid volumes where privacy is paramount. Because they are removed from the perimeter, these volumes penetrate through the ceiling seeking light, forming permanent imprints into the otherwise flat plane of the green roof garden.
With the swing of a plane, sections can be cut off from the rest of the home without the expense and hassle of remodeling. Walk-in closets are sized and mechanically outfitted so they can be transformed into kitchenettes simply by receiving appliances when the day comes. After children grow up and move out, sections of the plan can become rental apartments for the empty-nester home owners; and after the original homeowners are gone, the house can transform into two, three, or four separate rental apartments that can accommodate a range of households- from small families to college students. All of these options are possible within the existing building. The future is embedded within the architecture.
Location: Princeton, New Jersey
Size: 4,600sf (plus finished basement and garage)
Status: Under Construction