"AFTER YOU" LOFT
Design Team: Matt Fajkus, AIA; Audrey McKee
Design Support: David Birt, Brandon Hubbard
The remodel of “After You” Loft is an exercise in open floorplan and minimal intervention for maximal results. Here, the focus is not on the impact of architectural elements, but rather on their absence. The loft rests on the fifth floor of a midcentury modern tower in downtown Austin, Texas. Prior to this proposal, all walls were original and the condo was divided into three main spaces – a living room and two bedrooms. Given the fortunate location of a corner spot with south-western exposure, in addition to uninhibited views of the capital building and panoramas of downtown Austin, the existing configuration was not fully taking advantage of its own real estate by separating its space with walls and doors. In order to reclaim and redistribute the light, air, and views afforded by the loft’s location, these three spaces were joined into one open space through the removal of their walls.
Once removed, the walls made way for a seemingly simple box in the center of the space. The ‘box’ houses necessary service areas, while also anchoring the space and denoting a separation between public and private zones of the home. In order to further the airy feeling of the space, the edges of the box are pulled away from the floor and ceiling to make way for hidden lighting behind. The result is a gem that rests peacefully within the room and makes way for one to enjoy the natural beauty afforded by the space, both day and night.