Mickey Conrad, Photographer

Mickey Conrad, Photographer

Leed Certification
Sustainable Sites

310 Madison


Mickey Conrad


San Antonio, TX

Project Type:


Project Goal:

The home on Madison Street is for an 'empty nester' couple that hosts frequent guests and needed some flexibility in terms of accommodating larger numbers of people. The couple also envisioned living in the home and in the future, potentially using it as a rental property source. The infill lot is located on a historic street with a variety of different architectural styles, but it was important to design a structure that would blend into the neighborhood naturally yet still function in a high-performance manner. The client also wanted to reduce energy and water consumption as well as reduce overall material used for construction. They wanted open living spaces filled with natural light and to reduce the amount of hardscape to minimize overall maintenance. Challenges involved included: arranging spaces on a narrow and deep city lot with the garage located behind the main house; and protecting openings from southern and western sun exposure, especially important in South Texas.


The house was designed with the master bedroom and living spaces on the first floor and guest bedrooms on the second story to allow for judicious use of the heating and cooling system. Simple, traditional forms and materials were incorporated to blend quietly into the neighborhood, and use of reclaimed lumber for framing and exterior appointments add visual appeal and character. A thermally efficient envelope reduces energy load and natural daylighting reduces lighting load. Combined with energy and water efficient appliances, plumbing and light fixtures, overall consumption is drastically reduced. A pervious grasspave drive and climbing vines will: reduce heat sink; visually soften driveways and slow runoff. Drought resistant plants and turf partially irrigated with harvested rainwater add depth to the structure while not sacrificing water in an area prone to drought. The result is a lovely, high-performance house in a historic neighborhood.

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