Fast Forward

by Amanda Bedgood

If the winners of the 2015 INDesign Awards are any indicator, Acadiana is on the fast track of modern design. Judges took note of sustainable efforts that look good and do better. From abolishing a blighted spot on the Bayou Teche with a soaring tower to a green spot in Freetown and California modern done the Acadiana way, five projects garnered six gold awards for efforts in both architecture and design as well as interior design.

On Thursday, April 16, these winners will be honored at a luncheon at the Cajundome Convention Center where design lovers will hear the vision of the future of Acadiana architecture from renowned urban designer and author Steve Mouzon. Since their inception in 2005, the INDesign Awards have noted progress in both residential and commercial projects from architecture and interior design to historic preservation and urban development. (Commercial winners will be profiled in the April-May issue of ABiz.)

Join us at 11:30 a.m. April 16 for the INDesign Awards and read on for a glimpse into the talent making our residential community a more visually stunning place.

Check out our photo galleries online at


Architecture and Design

Angelle Residence

Donald J. Breaux, Architect

Contractor: Lagneaux construction


The return of the Louisiana house

When there’s a towering oak tree extending across your lot, you build around it. In fact, it was the one caveat when Donald Breaux undertook the architecture and design of the Angelle family home on Villaggio Drive in River Ranch.

Inspired by Elemore Morgan Sr.’s question of why Louisianans seemed to lose the affinity to build with our home state’s climate and environment in mind after the 1860s, Breaux set about to create a project that would marry that bygone love of good taste and “our feeling for buildings as a form of art.”

The project began with two lots — one that includes the massive oak with branch coverage of up to 130 feet in diameter — and design that reflects a Louisiana house from the early 1800s.

The entry walk sets the stage winding through the large canopy of the tree while porches at the front and back welcome the shade from the property’s focal point. In an effort to truly bring a regional feel to the project, Breaux infused the design with Louisiana-influenced elements — recycled brick walls and floors, wood beams, wood ceilings and wood cabinets.

“The end result attempted to continue the lost Louisiana houses of the 19th century,” says Breaux.


Architecture and Design


Building Institute

Contractor: Construction Associates

To the Core

The outside comes in

Elizabeth “EB” Brooks began sketching her dream home years ago while in grad school in Texas. And in 2012, in what can only be described as serendipity, the UL Lafayette Building Institute’s Neighborhood Infill Program produced a home with striking similarities.

The COURhouse is, at its core, a sustainable home that marries modern design with a down home feel on Jackson Street in the heart of Lafayette. It’s the third market-rate home designed and built as part of the UL program — each of which maintains a unique flavor.

This go round, students made a courtyard so central to the design they infused it into the name. A massive 10-foot by 7-foot glass roll-up door opens from the kitchen into the courtyard while sliding glass doors give access from the living room. In the master bedroom French doors face the courtyard. All roads point outward at COURhouse.

Exposed beams inside and reclaimed cypress outside bring a flavor that’s local — the porch is wrapped in wood from an 1800s Arnaudville home — while concrete floors and corrugated metal and steel angle backsplashes are industrial.

The Freetown home was designed according to LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) Silver criteria and includes sustainable features like a 4-kilowatt photovoltaic system on the roof, instant gas water heater, advanced wood framing, permeable grass paver driveway and energy efficient appliances. It all adds up to a very practical project that began in one woman’s daydream.


Architecture and Design, Interior Design

Hebert Residence

Gomez Design Group, Casie Webb Designs

Contractor: Ketteringham Builders

Goin’ Back to Cali

The minimal look comes home

Steven and Cindy Hebert know a thing or two about homes. The Lafayette real estate man and his wife knew when it was time to build they would bring the modern vibe of California cool to Acadiana.

A marriage of minimal and cozy were the task at hand. One accomplished from the efforts of design firm Gomez Design Group along with interior design work from Casie Webb Designs.

“The Heberts wanted to incorporate ‘California modern’ into their new home without compromising the warmth and coziness of a traditional home,” says home designer Les Gomez.

The design includes a clean look with an open floor plan that allowed the patio to be part of the living space for both entertaining and relaxing along with lots of natural light.

Built on Biltmore Way in River Ranch, the home’s architectural restrictions required creative effort to pull off the traditional and modern in correct proportions from the exterior viewpoint.

Much of the seriously modern vibe is inside where Webb worked to avoid the sterile feel that can come from some forward-looking homes.

“We created the feeling of warmth and comfort while staying clean and modern. The color palette includes consistent warm grey tones, which paired beautifully with bright, bold pops of color throughout the home,” says Webb. “The strategic use of heavy textured materials contrasted against smoother surfaces makes the space feel warm and inviting.”


Architecture and Design

Mid-Century River House

Jeffery Carbo Landscape Architects

Contractor: Heinen Construction

River Renovation

Interior and exterior in harmony

In the heart of Lafayette this mid-century River House on Beverly Drive underwent a three-year renovation that resulted in more than a simple facelift. It was a serious overhaul from front and back gardens to the river’s edge.

Jeffrey Carbo Landscape Architects was tapped to retain the spirit of the mid-century modern design from top to bottom. It was a goal that meant sensibility and simplicity in design with the use of both native and non-native landscape elements. Elements of that design were bold linear patterns with rows and grids of trees that would frame outdoor views and obscure adjacent views off site.

“Our client wanted the landscape to be distinctly different, with emphasis on plants that were distinctly vertical, and that would complement the architecture,” says Carbo.

The centerpiece of the renovation became the new outdoor living area and pool revamp. Durable materials like concrete, steel and Ipe Decking were used for the structure, while the pool was fitted with new coping, and lawn terraces were created with low walls. Trees across the property were utilized from those that were edited to create a more open view to others that are now lit to create a modern view on the river — all resulting in a series of gardens and interior and exterior spaces that became seamless.


Architecture and Design

Tensas Tower

Paul J. Allain, Architect

contractor: Kerne Construction

Building Up

The beauty of vertical building

It’s a rare accomplishment to create a thing of beauty from a blighted radiator repair shop. It’s just what the Paul J. Allain architecture firm did at the New Iberia property dubbed Tensas Tower.

The project name is homage to the U.S.S. Tensas — a Civil War shipwreck found during the waterfront development along the Bayou Teche waterway — and an apt moniker for a contemporary and compact residence with characteristics of a ship. Most notable perhaps is the building’s largest balcony that has the feel of a ship’s bow — the peak of which hit about 60 feet in the air from the water’s edge.

While the aesthetics are a sight to behold, the true beauty is found in the sustainability and stellar views. Living spaces are stacked and given a 360-degree view of the site — a small footprint with a big feel from the inside.

From rain water collection and daylight harvesting to natural ventilation and recycled materials, the effort to create a space that functions with the natural green space was paramount “to maximize the surrounding natural green space that promotes biodiversity of native wildlife and vegetation in an urban environment,” says David Allain, Paul’s son who was part of the design team and now calls Tensas Tower home.

Meet the Judges

Eddie Cazayoux is serious about design. Good design. Design that lasts.

“Anyone that does anything should be looking at sustainable,” he says.

The longtime UL professor, now retired, helms EnvironMental Designs, where he is an architect with a love for historical preservation and sustainable projects. He judged the 2015 INDesign competition with a keen eye for far more than aesthetically attractive elements.

“It should be all about cutting edge sustainable design for the benefit of the client and for the planet,” Cazayoux says.

He says in a culture that often accepts nearly disposable design that lasts about 15 years, it’s important to look for great design — no matter the décor vibe or what’s en vogue — and materials and elements that last.

“Durability is important ... there’s value in that. Any architecture is a major financial investment. This is something you’ll live in and you want good resale value. Sustainable just makes all the sense. The attitude when you design should be that this is something that will be around. Don’t bend to fashion. With good design it doesn’t matter if it’s contemporary or traditional — either works.”

Interior design judge Beth Miller follows the same line of thinking. The Mississippi State professor of interior design says her personal leanings aren’t a part of the process when evaluating projects.

“I look at the overall space from the lighting and the focal points and where was the emphasis for the design. I look at all the elements,” Miller says.

She says repetition is important as well as how everything ties together. The visual appeal is relevant. But she says good design should never just be about what appeals to her personally.

“You see a whole composition. You don’t have a preference. I like everything from historic to modern. I like it all. It’s more about is this good design. I’m an educator and it’s similar to that — for a project from a student it’s not whether I like that color; rather, it’s did they use it in a good way?”

Eddie Cazayoux

Eddie Cazayoux is an architect who heads the local firm EnvironMental Design, where he practices sustainable architecture and historic preservation. Eddie is a retired professor of architecture in the School of Architecture & Design at UL Lafayette, where he taught for 30 years and was the director for 13. He was named Distinguished Professor and held the Regents Professorship in Architecture. He has a passion for green design and lives in Breaux Bridge. For many years he judged architecture competitions for the owners of IND Media when they published The Times of Acadiana and agreed to return as a judge for this year’s INDesign competition. Welcome back, Eddie.

Beth Miller

Beth Miller is an interior designer and professor in Mississippi State University’s College of Architecture, Art and Design. Beth also serves as director of its interior design program. She earned her bachelor of fine arts degree from Louisiana Tech University. This year marks the 11th year that she has judged the INDesign Awards.

Silver (Residential)

Angelle Architects: Studios @ LWG

ARCH & Also: Elephant Walk Renovation

Edson L Davis Design: Fontenot Camp

Mark Lalande, Architect: Schoeffler Residence

Charles Seale Desgin: The Lofts

Bronze (Residential)

Saft Architecture: Dupuy Farm

EcoLafayette: Enclave Phase 1

Abell Crozier and Davis Architects: Hilliard Residence

Kally Sere Design: Domingue Residence