Since 1967, first-year students at the Yale School of Architecture have worked collaboratively to design and build a structure as part of their graduate education. Unique among architecture schools, the Jim Vlock Building Project is a required component of Yale's curriculum. In recent years, the Building Project has focused on the design and construction of affordable houses in New Haven's economically distressed neighborhoods.

For the first time, the Yale School of Architecture is partnering with Columbus House, a non-profit organization that has been providing solutions to homelessness in the New Haven area since 1982. Columbus House provides emergency shelter and a continuum of housing and services designed to help people who are homeless or at risk move towards independence.

This year's brief targets a 1,000 square foot house of two separate dwellings, to be located on a lot in New Haven's Upper Hill neighborhood. Students are challenged to develop a cost-efficient, flexible design that tackles replicability in material, means, and method of construction.

During the first half of the spring semester, students work individually, each developing a prototype for the dwelling. Some of these initial schemes are selected for further development, and the class is divided into teams, each team tasked with creating a final design proposal. At the end of the semester, one project is chosen and the entire class works together to build the selected design.

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April 10th: Teams presented their design proposals to a panel of critics. This progress review was arranged to allow teams present their initial ideas and concepts, and engage in conversation to help further develop those ideas.


May 1st: Final Building Project Review

May 22nd - August 15th: Yale School of Architecture Gallery, Exhibit of Student Work, 180 York Street, New Haven, CT, 06511, free and open to the public, M-F 8am-5pm


June 17th - 24th: Homeless:Housed Pavilion as part of the International Festival for Arts and Ideas, 10am-4pm daily