By Nick Gilbert
Non-profit organization, DesignBuildBLUFF, has completed a new environmentally sustainable home, The Nakai House, designed and constructed by eight students as part of the one-year program of the organization. All the eight students hail from the University of Colorado in Denver, U.S.
Nakai House, DesignBuildBLUFF, 2012. (PRNewsFoto/DesignBuildBLUFF)
DesignBuildBLUFF has a tradition of building environmentally sustainable homes and this time, has offered students the opportunity to design and construct one for a deserving family in the Navajo Nation reservation in Bluff. The Nakai House, built for poet Lorraine Nakai, began last spring when DesignBuildBLUFF and Navajo Nation decided to select a deserving family wishing for a home with a new sustainable design. Once the final design was selected by the team and Lorraine, the eight students relocated to Bluff, leaving behind the comfort of their university to construct the house.
Although, the project was supervised by the architect and founder of DesignBuildBLUFF, Hank Louis along with other officials of the University of Colorado's College of Architecture and Planning, the major share of the work, such as designing and labor, was done by the students.
The Nakai house was ready in five months. It has a parabolic roof that apparently looks like it is moving with the wind with surrounding dunes forming a rainscreen that reflects the desert and is made of reclaimed spandrel glass. The house has a burnt to a charcoal finish. The inside has a large bookshelf that runs through the length of the house, separating the entertaining area from the private living spaces. The house is a mixture of cedar, steel and glass, reflecting the landscape it resides within.