COURhouse could be yours

by Leslie Turk

UL architecture students' sustainable home, on the market for $190k, features a centralized courtyard connecting the living room and kitchen to the outdoors.

From 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, architecture students of the Building Institute at UL Lafayette will show off this year's "Design+Build" home and begin accepting bids.

The Building Institute is a program that strives to revitalize communities around Lafayette by building affordable, sustainable homes on empty lots in neighborhoods. The construction of the COURhouse is a joint effort between the UL Building Institute, Ragin' Cajun Facilities and the Lafayette Public Trust Financing Authority, with construction financing funded by renewable zero interest loan from the LPTFA.

The COURhouse is a three bedroom, two-bath, 1,500-square-foot home in the Freetown neighborhood between downtown Lafayette and UL. Its address is 324 Jackson St., across from last year's Design+Build home, the NEXThouse.

COURhouse's courtyard

According to a press release about the project, the "COURhouse" name comes from the home's prominent feature, a centralized courtyard connecting the living room and kitchen to the outdoors, offering residents a sense of openness and spaciousness. The courtyard is accessible through a large 10-foot-by-7-foot glass roll-up door from the kitchen, two sliding glass doors from the living room, and French doors to the master bedroom.

The front porch is wrapped in reclaimed cypress wood from an 1800s home in Arnaudville donated by Mr. Jeff Simeral. Clerestory windows and sliding glass doors allow light to flood into the spacious living room and the kitchen's 16-foot vaulted ceilings. A large exposed beam runs through the living room extending out to the front porc, and exposed rafters line the living room ceiling. The interior finishes give the home an industrial feel with concrete floors, custom concrete countertops, reclaimed corrugated metal and steel angle backsplashes.

Sustainability features of the home include a 4 kw PV panel system on the roof, an instantaneous gas heater, advanced wood framing, and energy efficient appliances.

The COURhouse was designed by architecture students Barrett Bertrand, Nicholas Clesi, Abigail Comeau, Daniel Ferg, Liran Timiansk and Jennifer Young and was built by 25 students, in conjunction with J.C. Dugas Construction Associates.

The house is listed for $190,000. Requests for showings can be directed to the program coordinator of the LPTFA, Rebekke Miller, at (337) 504-2314.

Offers on the house will be accepted beginning at 3 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8. All offers must be in writing and must be directed to Miller. Offers may be delivered to 910 Harding St. beginning Monday, Feb. 10 at 8:30 a.m.