Centre County Housing & Land Trust, Ferguson Township
The Full Circle team designed this set of townhomes with the concept of bridging the home and garden. The Turnberry development is located at the site of the former Penn State Circleville Farm, and so the team designed the homes and site in a way to thoughtfully integrate farming, gardening, and food with the homes. The intent was not to make every resident a new farmer but to make every farmer aware of where their food comes from and to promote a stronger connection to their environment.
In designing for community development and social interaction, one of the team members presented the image of the Chinese Tulou. These large housing buildings were designed so that residences were equal and public spaces were shared among all inhabitants. This same strategy is used by the team to design public spaces that people want to use; instead of a single collective green space, smaller green spaces that are adjacent to housing clusters are designed so that residents have a sense of ownership to the public spaces. Front and rear yards are designed to promote both equality and individuality by the residents, this means large open spaces articulated with gardens or planters to imply lines of ownership but encourage use of the shared properties often abandoned in typical townhouse developments.
The image of the circle eludes to the initial impacts of construction to live in. Energy considerations are calculated to consider both the initial impacts of construction, the impacts of living in the homes, and the potential impacts of the homes at the end of their lives. Total life-cycle costs and energy are considered so that a house is not only affordable to buy, but remains affordable to live in, and so that energy consideration is not calculated by a monthly energy bill, but through the total embodied energy of a material from construction to disposal. This is Full Circle.