ARC 448/ARC 548

ARC 448/ARC 548– Small Build Works

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Course Details

Course No.: 19330

Department: Architecture

Semester: 2017 Spring

Location: TBD – TBD

Meeting Day(s): TBD

Meeting Time: TBD

Faculty: Wales

This Lab will focus on the renovation of a wood frame house. Partnering with Habitat for Humanity Buffalo, we will complete the construction as designed by a graduate studio in Fall 2015. The goal of the lab is to develop skills and understanding of construction materials and methods for residential projects. Students will learn construction skills, reading construction documents, managing construction, and designing and drawing details.. Each student will prepare a portfolio of work accomplished during the semester. Students in the course must be available to spend concentrated time at the construction site, and will be required to log a prescribed number of hours to gain credit for the lab. This requires scheduling in advance, and will involve spending 6-8 hours per day, at least two days per week on site. Scheduling will depend on the number of students in the course. Two days will be required for three credits.


Topics to be addressed in the course include:


  1. 1. Reading and interpreting construction documents in a construction environment.
  2. 2. Construction management of small projects, including scheduling, coordination of building trades, quality control, tracking materials and tools, recycling materials and products, etc.
  3. 3. Innovation in construction materials, methods, and project delivery with respect to affordable housi
  4. 4. Understanding the culture of HfH as a charitable homebuilding enterprise and its influences on the design of HfH homes.
  5. 5. Identifying opportunities for the architecture profession to contribute value in the process of developing housing with volunteer workers.


HfH is the single largest builder of affordable housing in the U.S.. Habitat’s renovation projects have the virtues of countering blight in vulnerable neighborhoods, reducing waste by re-using existing structures, and providing new homes for deserving families. Opportunities for participating in this project are also available during Winter and Summer sessions.