I wanted to be an architect at the age of eight. This desire started when my mom saw me drawing and said to me “hey you can draw pretty straight lines, you should be an architect…” I didn’t know exactly what that word meant, but when she told me that they design houses and buildings I thought, yep sounds like me, and I started drawing floor plans. As I got older I kept true to this goal of becoming an architect, but the motivations behind it would change. Around middle school I became aware of the extreme poverty in the world through my large screen television sitting on my comfortable couch. I realized that I didn’t just want to design houses, but I wanted to design houses for the people who didn’t have one. For a school project I created my solution for homelessness called “The Plan for Poverty”. I created a design for neighborhoods of Texas style suburbia homes built in the slums of India, complete with a community center at the end of each cul-de sac. Though my solution of dropping in single-family, 2,000 SF, hipped-roof brick houses may have been completely wrong, my intentions were good and I had found a desire to do my part to make quality housing more accessible for all.
I continued my passion for architecture, eventually went to college, and became a licensed architect in Texas. Along the way I found resources and organizations that shaped my view on how design can impact people’s lives. Two of those being Architecture for Humanity, and the Tulane City Center (Now the Albert and Tina Small Center). These organizations were inspiring models for providing access to design services and innovative design solutions. I began to develop a vision for how these practices could be applied to the current home-building industry and housing market in Texas.
The spaces we live in have a profound impact on the quality of our lives. It affects everything from our physical health, our mental state, our energy, and the energy we are able to put out into the world. The home is the foundation from which we live our lives. It can either be a solid platform from which we can live those lives fully, or a barrier keeping us from reaching our full potential. I started Locksley Architecture + Design Studio to focus on increasing access to quality homes that improve the quality of life of the people who reside in them. Through our unique design process we are able to create spaces that maximize the end user’s experience, all while using our research and resources to pinpoint inefficiencies and reduce the cost of building.
While there are endless, complex challenges causing the limited access to housing we see today, we take on a few of them to start to chip away at the issues. We highlight and share other organizations and companies who are working toward solving the housing crisis. By sharing methods and case studies already out there, we can begin to work together as an industry, and society to do better.