$99K House Series: Core House

Next featured entry to the $99K House Competition: This design from Houston’s Glassman Shoemake Maldonado Architects. The firm calls its design the Core House:

Like many of the existing homes in the Houston neighborhood, the CORE house is a compact, single story structure that uses pier and beam construction. The CORE house is powered by a “core” module, defined as an unchanging, narrow mechanical/plumbing spine. The body can be built to suit a family’s needs, while the CORE remains the same.


The core’s versatile design allows it to correspond with small, medium, and large homes. Because the CORE does not change, it can be built easily on site or as a prefabricated module. The CORE house offers flexibility and ease of construction while limiting future maintenance. Eliminating construction waste, the majority of exterior and interior materials are installed in their off-the-shelf dimensions.

The CORE house’s orientation and window placement allow for cross ventilation from the southeast breezes. An overhanging sloped roof extends to the south, allowing sunlight through high windows during winter months yet shading during the hottest Houston months. With the efficient design of the CORE house, individual families have the opportunity for a unique home built with ease at the expense of 99K.

Swamplot is featuring home designs by participants in the 99K House Competition sponsored in 2008 by the Rice Design Alliance and the Houston Chapter of the AIA. You can see all the competition entries Swamplot has featured so far on this page.

Images: Glassman Shoemake Maldonado Architects

One Comment

  • So this take the idea that office buildings have been using for over 100-years and slaps it into a home.

    Neat idea. It also should be cost effective for running ducts and pipes through out the home.