august 2019 - february 2020
Architecture: Clark Richardson Architects
AIA Austin Homes Tour: 2021
Photographer: Chase Daniels
Concrete: Abel Rodriguez
Irrigation: Cougar Irrigation
Our goal was to compliment the architecture by Clark Richardson Architects and elevate the homeowners’ experience both inside and outside this home in the Rosedale neighborhood in Austin, TX. The clients asked us to define entry sequence and circulation while creating a landscape composition that elevated the front façade. We provided privacy solutions for unwanted sight-lines from surrounding neighbors and also developed a thoughtfully-composed courtyard space with a sculptural water/fire feature as its central focus.
To harmonize with the home’s understated use of natural textures and colors we used a subdued palette of materials, including dark grey basalt footpaths, grey Lueder pavers, and a lighter black-speckled salt and pepper riverstone.
The entry sequence is called out by a path of pavers from the driveway up to the front yard. Secondary circulation is suggested by gravel pathways framed by planters or rows of plants, which lead around to the courtyard and then the backyard.
We used a grid based on the courtyard’s rhythm of windows to provide the underlying logic for the courtyard's spatial arrangement. This space-making strategy provides a subliminal unified connection to the composition of the home. The courtyard boasts an artistic rendition of a fountain and fire feature bench. Users can see the fire from inside and enjoy as they would a fire place, or in the hot summer months, sit and dip their feet in the fountain. Steel landings with pavers give access to the space on a grid. St. Augustine grass gives a barefoot pathway out into the space.
The backyard is a grassy dog run with a place to sun-dry clothes. Functional and private, this sits off the laundry room in the very back of the house. A deck sits off the kitchen that is framed by vegetation in steel planters, which is visible through the many glass hallways in the house. Greenery flanks windows to tuck lushness in negative spaces created by the house, softening the lines of the structures.
Vegetative specimens were spaced along lines or grids all throughout the property, anchored by heritage trees in the front and courtyards. These spaces are accented by sculptural plants like an ornamental olive tree and colorful Pride of Barbados in the front, and a Japanese maple in the courtyard. Privacy is achieved by a run of clumping bamboo and trellises with star jasmine vines on either side of the tree in the courtyard, and a trellis with wisteria screens the side of the carport.
Instead of sending water overflow to the street, the intent is to keep rainwater on site by encouraging percolation through gravel surface treatment or directing it to planting beds as supplemental watering. This reduces an environmental impact on nearby creeks.