The Centra Homes Blog

Functional Home Design: Architecture that Supports Your Lifestyle

May 3rd, 2019

Functional Home Design:  Architecture that Supports Your Lifestyle

A decades-long partnership with an award-winning architecture firm highlights the role collaboration plays in helping Centra bring the next generation of functional design to Twin Cities homeowners

“There is a disconnect in many people’s understanding of architects,” begins Paul Brady, a Principal at the architecture firm Godden Sudik, “the perception is that we all long to design museums and stadiums.”

The Colorado-based architect says that while such pursuits can be rewarding, he is much more interested in architecture that has a direct relationship with an end user’s quality of life.  Which is why he chooses to ply his trade in residential design, where function and flow trump scale and scope.

“What we do is a more functional and intimate,” says Brady, “I find it more rewarding as it has a much larger impact– influencing how you use your home, interact with neighbors and even your spouse.”

Increasingly Brady and his colleagues at Godden Sudik have been bringing this unique balance between functional design and aesthetics to the Twin Cities in collaboration with Centra Homes.

Godden Sudik and Twin Cities-based Centra Homes have worked together to incorporate functional design components to 15 projects over the past several years.  Most recently completing the Lakeview at Central Park project in Maple Grove.  Their partnership growing as Centra Homes operation has swelled to over $250 million in new construction since 2011.

Asked for examples of functional design components, Brady notes design choices both large and small as playing a role.  He says that large items like front porches can be leveraged to create a community feel, and care taken with elevation and detailing can enhance usability while also breaking prevalent patterns in housing to create visual interest.  At the micro level, he is able to drill down on simpler design choices like laying out appliances in a kitchen, or placement of towel bars as impactful.

It is this ability to think both large and small that first caught the attention of Centra Homes President Dale Wills over a decade ago.

“Godden Sudik comes at every project with a clear set of design ideas,” says Wills, “but it is their flexibility, attentiveness to our needs and attention to detail that really differentiate them.”

Wills says that in addition to the great care they bring to their work, the firm also offers some distinct advantages due to a strong national presence.

“Because the team from Godden Sudik works on projects across the country,” says Wills, “they are able to offer up the best of the best in emerging design trends to make our communities stand out as unique neighborhoods.”

Wills says that examples include building smaller, more efficient homes as well as integrating superior finishes that can define style.

Speaking to the strength of the partnership, Brady likewise appreciates the approach of Wills and his team.

“The Centra Homes team is a very caring group.  They want the neighborhoods they build to be the best they can, so that anyone who visits a Centra community knows this is a really nice place to live.”

— Paul Brady, Principal, Godden Sudik Architects

Both men say that the collaboration between Godden Sudik and Centra Homes will continue well into the future– continuing to marry functional design with quality construction and aesthetics.

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