on the boards: pod architecture + design partners reveal plans for their modern house on a hillside

modern, custom-design house NC
Scale model of Carrboro House by pod architecture + design

Eager to plant their roots more deeply into their new hometown, experiential graphics designer Youn Choi and award-winning architect Doug Pierson, AIA, partners in life and founding partners of pod architecture + design (pod a+d) in Carrboro, have designed a modern house for their family of four that they’re about to build on a site that poses a host of challenges.

“No one has purchased the lot for a long time because it’s so hard to build on,” said Pierson, referring to the 1.2-acre swatch he and Choi purchased within a 12-acre preserved wooded area. “It has severe limitations: a year-round 100-foot creek setback, an oddly shaped buildable area, a steep hillside, dense forest coverage, and it’s adjacent to a floodplain.”

Yet Pierson and Choi didn’t see those issues as limiting. They saw them as inspirational.

From their design studio in the historic train depot in downtown Carrboro, Pierson explained how the land informed the custom design of the future 2500-square-foot, three-bedroom, three-bath modern house that he and Choi will share with their two young children.

Rendering

“We’ve chosen to honor the unique site by letting it suggest the form of the house,” he said. “So we’ve partially embedded it into the wooded hillside and opened it up to the natural meadow and creek at the lower elevations. We’ve used the strict construction limitations to establish a design that follows the usable land contours, reflects the climb in elevation by ‘hopping’ up to the higher elevation, then anchors itself back to the top. The form evolved wholly from the site limitations and our desire to maintain the meadow undisturbed.” He paused and smiled. “On a different site, it would be a different house. So we’re very happy that we found this particular site.”

Pierson, whose family hails from North Carolina, and Choi, a native of South Korea, are excited about reusing the Southern yellow pine trees that have to be felled to make room for the house. They’re having all of them milled locally then returned to the site to be repurposed as cabinetry and architectural woodwork.

According to the design, this modern, sustainable house will be a composition of sleek, rectilinear forms, at once soaring and grounded. Huge expanses of glass will frame views of the meadow, forest, and creek and allow natural light to fill the interior. The foundation and retaining walls will be polished concrete block. A terrace on the upper level will have glass overlook guardrails.

They haven’t decided on the exterior material yet. If the past is precedent, it will be corrugated metal. But Choi is still searching for a new cladding material that can be continuously wrapped around the house’s form and respond to the site and the climate.

Inside, their modern house will feature exposed structural steel, polished concrete floors over radiant heating, quartz countertops, and the repurposed southern yellow pine for custom cabinetry.

Committed to Local:

Pierson pointed out that he and Choi have hired green home builder Kevin Murphy of Newphire Building in Chapel Hill, and an all-local roster of consultants and suppliers including: structural engineer Rob Munach of Excel Engineering in Carrboro; Fitch Lumber & Hardware in Carrboro; Stonehenge Masonry and Adams/Oldcastle Products, both in Youngsville; Metal Sales Manufacturing Corp. in Mocksville; and radiant flooring expert Mike Torville of Carrboro.

The Choi-Pierson house should be completed by August of 2019.

For more information on pod a+d, go to www.podand.com and visit the blog, pod news & media. The firm is also on FacebookPinterest, and LinkedIn.

About pod architecture + design:

At pod a+d, we believe in the integration of architecture and all aspects of design to connect buildings + environment + identity. That’s why pod a+d is a hybrid firm, offering all architectural services, environmental design, experiential graphics, and wayfinding design. Exterior and interior architecture; furnishings and finishes; financial feasibility and scheduling; engineering and construction; and environmental graphics  –  considered simultaneously, these disciplines inform our hybrid/integrated approach to architecture. For more information: www.podand.com.

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Kentucky bourbon and brisket: pod architecture + design hosts Thirst4Architecture August 16

pod architecture + design
The pod a+d team: L-R Wendy Broome, Youn Choi, Barbara Ngaboyamahina, Dougald Fountain, and Doug Pierson Not pictured: interns from Doug’s third-year design studio at the NCSU College of Design, Dept. of Architecture — Casey Calhoun and Nailah Watts-Harper.

For the first time since moving back to North Carolina from the West Coast, Youn Choi and Doug Pierson, founders and principals of pod architecture + design (pod a+d) in Carrboro, will host Thirst4Architecture (T4A) to celebrate modern architecture and the people in the Triangle who love it on Thursday, August 16, from 6-8 p.m.

Free and open to the public, the event is one of the monthly happy hour networking social occasions established by North Carolina Modernist Houses and will be held in the firm’s studio in the historic train depot in the heart of downtown Carrboro.

T4A is an opportunity for anyone interested in and associated with modern architecture to mix, mingle, and build relationships with other modern design enthusiasts in a relaxed, casual environment. Pierson and Choi will provide the location, food, and beverages while participants get an up-close look at pod a+d’s work through models and drawings.

A Special Treat for T4A Guests

Award-winning architect Doug Pierson, AIA, recently attended the grand opening of one of his firm’s most ambitious projects to date: Rabbit Hole Distillery, a state-of-the-art, 55,000-square-foot, $15 million bourbon distillery and campus in downtown Louisville, Kentucky.

For their T4A event, Pierson and Choi are having Rabbit Hole’s award-winning bourbon shipped to Carrboro. The bar staff provided by Drew Moore, owner of CrossTies Barbeque (201-East Main Street) and several other local establishments, will serve special bourbon-based cocktails as well as “straight” and “on the rocks” options, and soft drinks for pod a+d’s August 16 event.

Moore is also providing CrossTie’s popular “Brisket Slides” for the evening’s savory selection.

 “As local as possible”

Pierson and Choi, partners in life as well as work, are relative newcomers to the Triangle architecture and design community, having recently returned from living and working on the West Coast. Their new modern house in Carrboro, which they designed together for their family of four, is under construction and will plant their roots here even deeper.

“We’re so happy to be back,” Pierson said, “that we’re doing everything we can to be as ‘local’ as possible. That’s why we chose space in the old depot for our offices. We’re active in the community, we shop at the Farmers Market and Weaver Street, and we’re working with one of the best high-performance, or ‘green,’ homebuilders for our new house: Kevin Murphy of Newphire Building in Chapel Hill. We’re also hiring all-local subcontractors and vendors, including the lumber supplier.” He smiled. “And we’re always free to talk when people walk in and tell us that our space doesn’t look like a barbeque joint.” He explained that people often mistake the firm’s front door for the entrance to Cross Ties.

pod architecture + design is located at 201-A East Main Street, Carrboro, NC (919.246.6466) For more information, visit www.podand.com. pod a + d is also available on Facebook.

Award-winning L.A. Architecture Firm Relocates to Carrboro, NC

pod_Doug at desjDecember 5, 2017 (Carrboro, NC) – Architect Doug Pierson, AIA, LEED AP, BD+ (left), and environmental graphics designer Youn Choi (below left) —  partners in life and in pod architecture + design (pod a+d) — have joined the flurry of businesses relocating to North Carolina’s Triangle region. They’ve moved their architectural firm from Los Angeles to Carrboro, where they’re currently settling into new offices in The Station, the town’s 1882 train depot.

Pierson and Choi relocated to the Triangle because they were ready for a lifestyle change and looking for excellent schools for their two children, Pierson said. They’d also visited the region many times since Pierson’s parents live here.

Spod_Youn standing.jpgo why Carrboro?

“Carrboro has a vibrant community, a diverse culture, great food, and music,” he said. “Carrboro shares all the best aspects of the Triangle and keeps us engaged not just in town, but with Durham, Raleigh and beyond.” 

With experience in all building types, pod a+d is a hybrid firm, actually.

Pierson, an award-winning architect, worked in Frank Gehry’s Los Angeles office before co-founding his previous firm — form, environment, research (fer) studio L.L.P. — in Inglewood, CA. He leads pod a+d’s architectural studio.

A native of South Korea, Youn Choi studied environmental design and architecture at UCLA. She worked with Disney Imagineering and Selbert Perkins Design, an international graphics design firm, before co-founding pod a+d, where she directs signage and wayfinding, interior design, and experiential graphics (the orchestration of typography, color, imagery, form, technology and, content to create “environments that communicate”).

Licensed in five states and staffed with team members who bring LEED AP and BD+C credentials to the table, pod a+d provides all architectural services from concept design through construction administration.  Their work has been featured in numerous newspaper, journals, and magazines. The firm’s address at The Station is 201-A East Main Street, Carrboro, NC 27510. For more information, visit www.podand.com.

podand_logo1About pod architecture + design:

pod a+d offers all architectural design services that connect building, environment, and identity because we believe in the integration of architecture and design disciplines throughout our projects.  Exteriors, interiors, engineering, furnishings and finishes, equipment, financial feasibility, scheduling, construction, and the environmental context – these are the contributing elements that inform our integrated approach to each architectural project’s design.  More information: www.podand.com.

 

The Mahogany Door Project To Perform During 2011 Carrboro Music Festival

Showcasing all-original live music at Cat’s Cradle

September 20, 2011 (Carrboro, NC) – The Mahogany Door Project, a band comprised of the musicians

The Mahogany Door Project created the all-original music for the book's soundtrack CD.

who created the original soundtrack CD for the new fantasy-adventure book “The Mahogany Door” by Durham author J. Mark Boliek, will perform live at the legendary Cat’s Cradle on Sunday, September 25, during the Carrboro Music Festival.

The band’s set will begin at 4:30 p.m.

“Dark, happy, and hopeful” are the words Boliek uses to describe the songs the Mahogany Door Project will perform. Boliek developed the songs so that readers of his book can immerse themselves in the book’s fantasy world of “Bruinduer.”

The Mahogany Door Project’s live performances are laced with an eclectic style of music ranging from pop and rock to country and classical – from a mysterious and lonely rock anthem to heart-breaking country tunes, R&B acoustic compositions, and a powerful rock lullaby. And all of the songs are appropriate for all ages.

The members of the band are: Mark Boliek, guitar; Jill Boliek, vocals; Scott Jackson, lead guitar; Jon Murray, guitar and vocals; Evans Nicholson, drums; Jim Gilliam, bass; Mary Summerlin, keyboard and vocals; and Chris Summerin, guitar.

“The Mahogany Door Project serves up a lot of fun, laughter, and good music,” Boliek said, noting that

Band leader/author Mark Boliek

he will also have copies of “The Mahogany Door” and CD on hand to sell. “We’re extremely grateful for the opportunity to be a part of such an exciting event as the Carrboro Music Festival.”

The band recently performed at Broad Street Café in Durham to a full house.

To hear a preview of the songs, go to www.jmarkboliek.com/the-music. The CD can also be heard through a variety of online sources including iTunes, Napster, Amazon MP3.

For more information on “The Mahogany Door,” a fantasy-adventure book for young readers, visit www.jmarkboliek.com.

Since its inception in 1998, the Carrboro Music Festival has drawn musicians and music lovers from all over the state. Performances take on 25 stages from one end of Carrboro to the other and the all-day event is free. The complete schedule can be downloaded at www.carrboro.com/carrboromusicfestival/.

Cat’s Cradle is located at 300 East Main Street in Carrboro, NC 27510 (919-967-9053). For more information and directions, go to www.catscradle.com.

Band Facts:

Musical Style/Genre: Pop, Rock, R&B, Country, Folk.

City of origin: Durham, North Carolina

Key Points of Interest:

  • Recorded new CD together (in association with Split Rail Multimedia)
  • Performs songs from the CD that are appropriate for all ages
  • Recordings of the songs can be heard at www.jmarkboliek.com and at other online resources
  • Facebook: http://www.facebookcom/jmarkboliek.