Zamore, Brett Elliot
Master of Architecture
The Shotgun house is a distinct American house type associated with African-American communities in the South. It derives its power and its timeless, universal appeal from the rhythmic recurrence of simple geometric forms. The Texas Shotgun type, which was built as an affordable solution, still offers qualities we can appreciate in contemporary living. This Thesis aims to rethink this type as an a alternative to suburban domesticity. I have found, in Houston's Fifth Ward, an existing double occupancy Shotgun-type house to rehabilitate, reprogram and reinsert a viable space for a family of low income. By removing its parting walls and allowing for its modules of space to flow into one another, the plan and organization of the house is kept simple. The interior is not over prescribed allowing for a greater flexibility. Respecting the existing understanding of the house as a duplex, the refill weaves the opposing two sides into a single home. The central dividing wall stays as the driving force of the design allowing for the two sides to take on the roles given by its lived in tenants. There are 3 parts to the Thesis. The first is the role I assume as designer and builder and how I inject an architectural value into the house, the second is the economics/cost of the project, and the third is how this project confronts social issues which plague our city.