May 6, 2020 § Leave a comment
By Nichol Jewell | Photos by Tzu Chen
Chapel Hill-based firm Arielle Condoret Schechter is known for its commitment to building sustainable homes that don’t sacrifice elegance or comfort. The company’s latest work includes the spacious Haw River House, which was built with several efficient features to create a net-zero energy home that is seamlessly linked with its natural surroundings.
Tucked into a pristine woodland overlooking the Haw River, which runs through central North Carolina, the beautiful Haw River House sits in harmony with the landscape. Using this natural setting as inspiration, the 2,600-square-foot house is outfitted with several energy-efficient features that make it completely energy-neutral. READ MORE
May 6, 2020 § Leave a comment
By J. Mike Welton | Photos by Tzu Chen
For a new home on the Haw River in North Carolina’s Chatham County, architect Arielle Schechter found her inspiration in two places.
One was the river. The other was a rock.
“Walking down by the riverbank, there were so many trees cantilevered and bent out over the river, that I said: ‘I want this house to bend out over the river too,” she says.
She placed the home on the only available buildable knoll since the 21-acre site slopes steeply down to a flood plain and riparian buffer below.
As for the rock, it actually was a huge granite boulder, split down the center. “It’s super-sculptural with a thin knife-blade through the middle where rainwater flows,” she says. “The idea of bisecting something appealed to me, so I did that with the butterfly roof.”
Then there was the raptor. READ MORE
April 21, 2020 § Leave a comment
THIS COUPLE HAD A RIVERSIDE LOT WITH A DREAM VIEW AFTER FINDING A SECLUDED PIECE OF LAND THAT OVERLOOKS THE HAW RIVER
By Matt White
After selling a home in Chapel Hill in 2017, Kate Paradis and Scott Zimmerman thought about buying a vacation home…
… In 2017 the couple began working with Chapel Hill architect Arielle Condoret Schechter. Arielle’s final design produced a low-slung, light-filled, 2700-square-foot as unique as its views…a net zero house that could be as much off the grid as practical…
To view the entire article in the digital magazine, CLICK HERE then flip over to page 56.
April 14, 2020 § Leave a comment
“There is absolutely no reason to design otherwise.”
— Arielle Condoret Schechter, AIA
Two houses on the virtual High-Performance Homes Tour (formerly Green Home Tour) that will go live Friday, April 24th at highperformancehometour.com, actually exemplify the tour’s new title. Both houses were custom designed by Chapel Hill architect Arielle Condoret Schechter, AIA. Both were built by green home builder Kevin Murphy of Newphire Building, also in Chapel Hill. And both are Net Zero houses.
Within durable, functional, cost-effective structures with neutral carbon footprints, these two houses produce as much energy as they need without depleting natural resources – the definition of high-performance.
“My ideal residential client,” Schechter says, “is anyone who wants a warm, comfortable, and practical Modern, energy-efficient sustainable home with lots of natural light and connections to the outdoors, clean lines, clear volumes, and open plans. Site sensitivity and energy efficiency are imperative, by the way. There is absolutely no reason to design otherwise.”
Murphy agrees. “I’m passionate about building beautiful, comfortable, high-performance homes that can achieve Net Zero energy status,” he says. “That’s why Arielle and I work so well together. We share that goal.”
The 5000-square-foot Coy-Davis “Homestead” (above) is the first Schechter-Newphire house on the tour. Schechter designed this Net Zero home for Dr. Deron Coy and Erica Davis to accommodate their blended family and future children and for a place for their extended family to congregate for holidays and vacations. It offers space for togetherness and space for privacy. The three upstairs bedrooms have their own bay windows cantilevered out towards the forest. Among its many sustainable features are a geothermal HVAC system, a solar array with battery storage, and super-insulation.
The second Schechter-Newphire virtual tour stop is the Dori Baboolal and Dr. Hemanth Baboolal residence. “Dori and Hemanth are part of Chapel Hill’s distinguished medical community,” Schechter notes. “The cookie-cutter house they’ve been living in is illogical for their growing family and doesn’t provide the strong connection to the outdoors that they long for. So they decided to build a custom-designed, distinctly modern, Net Zero house that would make sense for their family, with every space useful and every element suited to their family and lifestyle. We were honored to be asked to create such a house for them. And a key influence on the design: bringing the outdoors in and extending the interior living spaces out onto terraces, porches, and decks.”
Sponsored by the High-Performance Building Council, a joint council of the Home Builders Associations (HBAs) of Durham, Orange, and Chatham Counties and of Raleigh-Wake County, the virtual tour is free and available on April 25-26 and May 2-3 at www.highperformancehometour.com or by downloading the app in the App Store or Google Play.
The virtual tours of all 14 houses on the roster will include photos, floorplans, links to 3D video tours, and lists of green features.
March 4, 2020 § Leave a comment
For Women’s History Month, 10 architects on Houzz describe the designers, mentors and trailblazers who influenced them
By Annie Thornton
…For Women’s History Month, which commemorates the valuable contributions that women — often unsung — have made throughout history, we wanted to let the inspiring female pros on Houzz tell us about the women who’ve inspired them.
We asked women in architecture, a field still dealing with gender inequities, to describe the designers in their lives who have mentored, guided or otherwise positively influenced them in their careers… Here are 10 of our favorite answers…
(Below: For this article, Houzz featured the “lantern pavilion” outdoor dining space Schechter created on the house she designed for herself and her husband and their assortment of “critters.”)
2. Arielle C. Schechter on Spanish architect and product designer Patricia Urquiola
Patricia Urquiola “is a true world-class design star. I am a huge fan of her work and her furniture. I’ve been following her work for years. What I especially love is her ability to always surprise. Her work never repeats — there is always something new in her newest collection that is unlike anything she’s done before or that one has ever seen,” Arielle Schecter says.
CLICK HERE to see all 10 responses from women in architecture.
February 13, 2020 § Leave a comment
PHOTOS BY IMAN WOODS
Anne and Bruce, the clients for this project, had recently relocated to Chapel Hill from Florida. They considered themselves “climate refugees” who no longer wanted to live through the yearly hurricanes they were experiencing in Florida. They selected Arielle Schechter for her modernist style, then agree to ramp up the design “Net Zero Ready” in accordance with her commitment to sustainability. READ MORE
January 15, 2020 § Leave a comment
A chance encounter between architects Frank Harmon and Harwell Hamilton Harris became the genesis of our own genre of regional modernism.
By J. Michael Welton
…Don Kranbuehl, a senior architect at Clark Nexsen and assistant professor at N.C. State…sees [Frank] Harmon—a mentor and role model—as the Southeastern representative of regional modernism, while Chapel Hill architect Arielle Schechter considers his range broader. “I don’t think he knows the influence he’s had,” she says.
Harmon’s style never insists on a single solution. Instead, individual responses are de rigueur. “The site is your building, and you do what’s appropriate,” Schechter learned from him. So when she designed a home in Pittsboro for a couple seeking privacy from neighbors, she clad its front in cypress for total opacity. But its rear is transparent, with a porch that overlooks nature on its one-acre site…
“What sets it apart are great connections to outdoors, sensitivity to site and volumetric buildings,” Schechter says. “And there’s a lot of creativity around, and a lot of points of view around how to design.”
It’s this variety of interpretations that make the Carolina School. Its architects follow similar principles, but like artists, they work from their own palettes… READ MORE