Loblolly House: Pictures at Last


We have been waiting to see the photographs of the Loblolly House since the tease from Wired last week. Now Kieran Timberlake have put them up and we can finally see if the house lived up to the hype. The house is based on a new twist on prefabricated assembly: "The house is composed entirely of off-site fabricated elements and ready-made components, assembled from the platform up in less than six weeks. Specification is no longer conceived and structured about the sixteen divisions of the CSI that organizes thousands of parts that make up even a small house. Instead, the conception and detailing are formed about four new elements of architecture: the scaffold, the cartridge, the block and equipment. The aluminum scaffold system, coupled with an array of connectors, provide both the structural frame and the means to connect cartridges, blocks and equipment to that frame with only the aid of a wrench."


"The assembly process begins with off-site fabricated floor and ceiling panels, termed "smart cartridges." They distribute radiant heating, hot and cold water, waste water, ventilation, and electricity through the house. Fully integrated bathroom and mechanical room modules are lifted into position. Exterior wall panels containing structure, insulation, windows, interior finishes and the exterior wood rain screen complete the cladding. The west wall is an adjustable glazed system with two layers: interior accordion-style folding glass doors and exterior polycarbonate-clad hangar doors that provide an adjustable awning as well as weather and storm protection."


"This methodology confronts not only the question of how we assemble our architecture, but our obligation to assume responsibility for its disassembly. Just as the components may be assembled at the site swiftly with a wrench, so may they be disassembled swiftly, and most importantly, whole. Instead of the stream of decomposed debris that comprises much of what we are left with to recycle today, this house poses a far more extensive agenda of wholesale reclamation. It is a vision in which our architecture, even as it is disassembled at some unknown moment, can be relocated and reassembled in new ways from reclaimed parts."

::Kieran Timberlake