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Walnut Estates

Moto Designshop

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Sara Johnson, Hanley Wood Media

Project Name

Walnut Estates

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2016 Residential Architect Design Awards
Architectural Design Detail: Award

From the street, the row of four new luxury houses designed by Moto Designshop in Philadelphia’s Society Hill neighborhood is hard to even notice. Your eye is drawn instead to the bold but delicate brick-screen walls that stand in front of all but a thin slot of the masonry-and-glass façade. Towering straight up to the roof level of the Walnut Estates, the white bricks are articulated into a halftone pattern reminiscent of a newspaper photograph, providing both privacy and shade. “This is beautifully detailed,” juror Anne Decker said. “The rhythm and the animation are nice—it’s a very sophisticated use of the material.”

Inside, the three 5,500-square-foot and single 6,000-square-foot units are just as intricately detailed. Walnut hardwood and travertine limestone tile cover most floors beneath walnut-paneled ceilings. All of this indoor elegance, however, remains discretely hidden behind the veil of the homes’ deceptively simple brick screen, which juror Lisa Iwamoto called “an incredible use of brick.”

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