Cross House

The site for this project is located on a block in a 1950’s suburb of Long Island, New York. The context was very exciting to architects Messana O’Rorke, it was the first opportunity for their office to confront the suburban environment, the density, and the constraints of the small site.

The house is for a small family, a couple and their son and daughter. They wanted to create a private environment and at the same time a very public dining room, a vitrine.

The house is composed of two containers positioned perpendicular to each other one on top of the other. The ground floor contains the entrance, dining room, kitchen, guest bathroom, and living room.

The upper level is the private container where the three bedrooms and two bathrooms are located. Both roofs are green.

The overhang of the upper private container creates two shaded areas one is the out door area and the other is a car port. There is a basement level containing storage and mechanical spaces.

The glass walled dining room acts as a vitrine highlighting the ritual of the family meal provoking the neighbors and the passer by to witness the event. The house becomes private as the spaces and program recedes into the lot.

Photography by Brian Messana

Architecture & Design by Messana O’Rorke

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