Educating Citizen Architects
Front Porch Initiative
We are working to develop a scalable, sustainable, agile, and resilient delivery process for beautiful, well-designed, high performance affordable homes that can be titled as real property while also supporting an industry of home building in underserved rural communities.
Rural Studio philosophy suggests that everyone, both rich and poor, deserves the benefit of good design. The students work within our community to clarify problems, define solutions, design, fundraise, and, ultimately, build remarkable projects. Our research addresses rural communities holistically: from houses to infrastructure and resources, always mindful of the connectedness of the many facets of rural life.
We give architecture students a hands-on educational experience while working hand-in-hand with an under resourced population in West Alabama’s Black Belt region. The program establishes student project teams so that faculty can help them form their own communal and individual design processes. Students learn in a supportive culture that promotes problem solving, the value of listening, and the ownership of ideas.