Landscape Architect & Specifier News

NOV 2018

LASN is a photographically oriented, professional journal featuring topics of concern and state-of-the-art projects designed or influenced by registered Landscape Architects.

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"Michelle Shelor's dad was an architect and he designed one of (the homeowner's) houses. And so they asked us to do this for them. It was a house similar to a lot of houses in that part of the country and they wanted to make it as good as it could be. And they really wanted a more modern aesthetic." As it was, the house on a couple of acres had a plain front door, a stoop off the back door and was surrounded by native prairie, with some tree-lined windbreaks. A long entry drive led up to an auto court that ended with a garage. Started in 2009, Colwell Shelor is nearing its 10-year-old birthday and began when Allison Colwell met Michele Shelor at another firm. The landscape design company now has eight people including an architect, whose services come into play when structures are involved, as was the case on this project. Describing the stimulus behind the design, Colwell says, "Inspired by the region's raw natural beauty with its extreme semi-arid steppe climate, and the historic, rural character of the site, (we) transformed what was once an exposed, conventional brick house on a hill, into a bold, contemporary residence and garden united with the prairie." Left: Colwell Shelor Landscape Architecture was asked by a family friend of one of the Phoenix- based company's principals to serve as the design team to give this Dodge City, Kansas house, which was typical of the architecture in the area, a more modern aesthetic. That included this front vestibule, which gave the residence a much-needed protected entry, and an outdoor living room on the other side of the house. Both have extended shade structure canopies. A meadow of drought-tolerant grasslands was designated for much of the several acres of surrounding property. Native trees such as a willow, were also specified. The retaining walls are made of gray, poured-in-place concrete – selected to withstand the area's harsh winters. Right: To harmonize with the brick of the house, the beams, columns and perforated panels are made from high structural steel that once installed, rusted naturally and quite quickly. November 2018 45

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