The importance of the locale
The degree to which architects let site circumstances — the land and surrounding landscape — inform their design is directly related to the search for creating a unique sense of place.
For instance, a goal is always to anchor the project to the lay of the land. With first-principles problem solving, we use this goal to explore subtle influences such as materiality and nuance of detail to make a connection to the setting. In the case of the Kaupulehu residence, the sinuous curves of the lanai eaves create an intimate connection to the waves as they roll across the ocean in front of the home. In the same residence, we used curved roofs on outdoor pavilions to create uniquely designed shade structures. These were innovative solutions developed from first-principle level thinking that became signature design elements of this residence.
Invariably, each design is different, because of the unique individual circumstances of a site, such as topography, view planes, soil conditions and vegetation. The nature of the land is pivotal to revealing distinct design opportunities and inspiration.
When all is said and done, by respecting the locale, listening to the land and not applying analogical thinking, we can arrive at the best possible solution.