Mountainclimb

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Mountainclimb

Austin, TX

Craft Studios

Status

On the Boards

Partners

Builder: Form to Finish

Interiors: Studio Ferme, Kopfer Taylor

MEP Engineer: Positive Energy

Structural Engineer: Structures

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Habitat Montopolis Duplex​es

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Habitat Montopolis Duplex​es

Austin, TX

The forthcoming Habitat Montopolis Duplexes will be Habitat for Humanity Austin’s inaugural duplex project, comprising six duplexes adjacent to an existing single-family Habitat neighborhood in Austin’s Montopolis area.

This project aims to support Habitat’s goal of fostering a community within a community, integrating seamlessly into the existing single-family neighborhood while maintaining cohesion and a sense of collective identity.

Designing these homes for a nonprofit partner that primarily relies on donated building materials and labor required careful consideration, balancing the goals of quality and resilience with the constraints of donated materials and ensuring the feasibility of construction by volunteer laborers.

Once construction is completed, these all-electric Zero Energy-Ready Home-certified buildings will be some of the most efficient and resilient homes in the city. Importantly, they will also be among the most affordable, providing housing for 12 families in the community.

Craft Studios

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On the Boards

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Parker Lane

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Parker Lane

Austin, TX

Located in South Austin on a site formerly occupied by a local church, Parker Apartments provides 135 affordable housing units for families, a Learning Center with 6 classrooms and a Gathering Space large enough to accommodate the church congregation, a Leasing Office, and Foundation Communities’ Health Initiatives facilities, including a food pantry. The pedestrian entry to the site is located between two existing heritage live oaks that have a prominent stature in the neighborhood streetscape. 

Although Forge Craft had employed many of the principles of Trauma-Informed Design on previous projects without knowing them as such, Parker Apartments was the first time we formally employed those principles, including peer review by Shopworks Architecture of Denver, as part of the design process. One of the results of that exploration is an open breezeway that connects the common resident program elements and locates them within sight of property management staff, allowing residents to feel comfortable and safe while doing laundry and retrieving their mail. This building also achieves a four-star AEGB (Austin Energy Green Building) rating.

Craft Studios

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On the Boards

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Post Oak Residence

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Post Oak Residence

Austin, TX

This major renovation/addition connects a historic bungalow in the heart of Clarksville to a small outbuilding that is rumored to have been Stevie Ray Vaughn’s drug dealer’s home for years.  The connecting volume is two stories that work around a 40″ Post Oak tree – reaching up to glorious views of the downtown skyline through the tree canopy.

Built by Camelot Custom Homes, Interiors by Studio Ferme and Homeowner 

Craft Studios

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On the Boards

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Cloud Kitchens

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Cloud Kitchens

Austin, TX

Cloud Kitchens is a real-estate and technology enterprise that provides economic empowerment to food operators, enabling them to outsource cook lines through a network of remote, smart modular “ghost kitchens” that partner with the many online-order and food delivery services such as UberEats, DoorDash, GrubHub to name but a few.

In order to maximize its value to stakeholders, Cloud Kitchens was in critical need of a framework to inform the future of its kitchen spaces in simple, cost- and functionally-efficient designs.

Our client tasked us with the development of a modular concept to inform the future of and maximize the potential capacities in these ghost kitchens for its stakeholders. This project proved to be a creative exercise through an assemblage of volumetric modular, prefabricated and site- built components, both simple and sophisticated, into a modular solution to overcome a series of multifaceted architectural challenges driven by a difficult site and complex workflow, accessibility and code compliancies.

In close collaboration with the Cloud Kitchens team, we successfully envisioned a component-based system to manifest functional, performance-driven modular spaces that allowed our client to minimize costs and optimize their model. Our concepts fully realized represents the promise of cost-effective food delivery not only in Los Angeles but extrapolated to anywhere in the world.

Craft Studios

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On the Boards

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West 7th Passive House

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West 7th Passive House

Austin, TX

When it is completed later this year, Forge Craft’s West 7th Passive House is on track to become the largest certified Passive House project in the southern U.S.

Located just a stones throw away from downtown Austin, this ground-up duplex reimagines urban density while seamlessly integrating with the historic fabric of the Castle Hill Local Historic District. Most importantly, this unique property reflects the latest thinking in design and building science with the goal of creating healthier, safer, more resilient, comfortable, and energy efficient homes.

Designed to provide a spacious home for three families on a compact urban lot, the 5,000-square-foot duplex is strategically “hidden” behind a meticulously renovated historic cottage at the front, preserving the streetscape’s character. A series of overlapping private spaces within the lot have been optimized to provide each family with their own sanctuary, ensuring a sense of privacy, even on the small lot.

Beyond envisioning a Passive House-certified design, this project demands exceptional collaboration with city officials and various oversight bodies, understanding the rules for accessory dwelling units in the city, and identifying flexibility in order to achieve our vision. This collaborative approach helps ensure a successful outcome that respects the historic context while offering innovative, sustainable living solutions.

Ultimately, the West 7th Passive House duplex is poised to become a model for how density and history can beautifully coexist, enriching both the individual experience and the surrounding community.

Craft Studios

Status

Under Construction

Partners

Builder: Form to Finish

Interiors: Studio Ferme, Kopfer Taylor

MEP Engineer: Positive Energy

Structural Engineer: Structures

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The Sasha

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The Sasha

Austin, TX

The Sasha is a vital multi-family development comprised of 60 units with permanent and transitional supportive housing on the SAFE Alliance Campus, a key organization that works to address and end multigenerational cycles of violence and abuse.

Offering one-, two-, and three-bedroom units located at a key transit corridor in Austin, this development will be key to supporting individuals and small families transitioning out of circumstances into supportive housing.

Craft Studios

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On the Boards

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Zilker Studios

All Projects  >  Affordable Housing

Zilker Studios

Austin, TX

The site for Zilker Studios was lucky enough to contain two heritage live oaks, but building 110 units for single adults on the ½ acre site, while preserving their natural growth, presented challenges. To retain and highlight the site’s natural features, we conceptualized a place of repose nestled between the oak trees—in other words, a hammock—brought to life in the form of a breezeway. Utilizing the breezeway, we connected open spaces surrounding both trees and communal environments to establish the breezeway as a place where residents congregate and interact. The breezeway is punctuated vertically by a hole in the building’s concrete podium, a feature we refer to as the podium oculus or ‘pod-oculus,’ which connects the vertical circulation of the residential floors to the public spaces and allows natural light to penetrate deep throughout the project. This extremely energy-efficient and cost-optimized supportive housing project by Foundation Communities achieves net zero ready status through a variety of deep energy means that were studied with Passive House Institute US (PHIUS) via their custom targeting protocols. Zilker Studios is also pursuing an AEGB 5-Star rating.

Craft Studios

Status

Completed, 110 Units, Austin Energy Green Building 4-Star Rated, Winner for The Texas Apartment Association’s 2024 Affordable Housing Community of the Year

 

Partners

General Contractor: Barlett Cocke 

Civil Engineer: Civilitude

Structural Engineer: DCI Engineers

MEP Engineer: Aptus Engineering

Landscape Architecture: Asakura Robinson

Envelope Consultant: Acton Partners

Accessibility Consultant: Contour Collective

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Rasmus-Temenos

Temenos by Forge Craft

All Projects  >  Affordable Housing

Rasmus-Temenos

Houston, TX

Rasmus-Temenos is an innovative affordable housing project located just outside downtown Houston developed in collaboration with NHP Foundation and Temenos Community Development Corporation to provide supportive housing for Houston’s most at-risk populations.

Situated on less than one-third of an acre in a densely developed area of Houston, Rasmus-Temenos is a vertical community comprising 95 units of permanent supportive housing organized around a central light well. Demonstrating efficient use of space, the building’s ground floor also provides space for resident common areas, offices, and other permanent supportive services designed for residents transitioning out of homelessness.

Rasmus-Temenos prioritizes sustainability and resident well-being alike with a highly efficient building envelope designed to exceed Energy Star certification standards. Featuring elements like high-performance windows, LED lighting, low-flow plumbing fixtures, and a Dedicated Outdoor Air System, the project enhances indoor air quality to ensure long-term utility cost predictability for property management. With the project being located near a major highway, the robust building envelope, triple-pane windows, and soundproofing measures employed also help maintain a peaceful living environment to aid in trauma recovery and healing.

The vibrant colors across both the exterior and interior of Rasmus-Temenos stand out within the urban context and foster a sense of joy by offering residents—many of whom have experienced housing instability—a warm and inviting place to call home. The design strategy also places a strong emphasis on both durability and comfort, particularly in response to the needs of individuals with mental health concerns. Plywood and vinyl sheet flooring extend seamlessly up the walls, creating a resilient structure while maintaining a home-like atmosphere. Strategically concealed floor drains and vinyl walls further streamline maintenance without compromising the aesthetic appeal of the space.

Funding sources included a 4% tax credit from TDHCA and grants from the Harris County Hurricane Harvey recovery program. Harris County and the City of Houston were actively involved throughout the design and construction phases. Completed in 2023, Rasmus-Temenos is an example of the power of collaborative efforts in providing dignified housing solutions for vulnerable populations, and making Houston a more equitable city.

Craft Studios

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On the Boards

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