written by:
April 28, 2010

I'm headed to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to have a look at a house for a feature in the October issue. While I'm there I'm quite excited to be stopping in to chat with a class of graduate students in architecture at Louisiana State University. Architect and educator Jim Sullivan was kind enough to invite me to meet his students, and in the process I got a look at some of his own work at his firm LA-ab. He told me that only after getting tenure at LSU, where he also heads up the Research Office for Novice Design Education, was he able to devote more time to his private practice, but he's got a couple projects under construction now.

LAab-Marquis-Loft-Diagram.jpg

Here's the plan for the Marquis Loft, which Sullivan designed for a restaurateur to double as a residence and event space.
Here's the plan for the Marquis Loft, which Sullivan designed for a restaurateur to double as a residence and event space.
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LAab-Marquis-Loft.jpg

The Marquis Loft is under construction now, but should be complete in the next month.
The Marquis Loft is under construction now, but should be complete in the next month.
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LAab-Marquis-Loft-Plan.jpg

The long, narrow space is about a 2,000-square-foot renovation in Lafayette, Louisiana.
The long, narrow space is about a 2,000-square-foot renovation in Lafayette, Louisiana.
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LAab-Buchanan-Lofts-Lobby.jpg

This rendering for the Buchanan Lofts, which just began construction, shows how the former warehouse will be converted into residential space.
This rendering for the Buchanan Lofts, which just began construction, shows how the former warehouse will be converted into residential space.
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LAab-Buchanan-Lofts.jpg

Sullivan describes the short-term rental lofts as "somewhere between an apartment and a hotel room in length of stay."
Sullivan describes the short-term rental lofts as "somewhere between an apartment and a hotel room in length of stay."
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LAab-Buchanan-Lofts-Blueprint.jpg

There are eight units altogether, with commercial space on the ground floor.
There are eight units altogether, with commercial space on the ground floor.
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LAab-Reagan-Residence-Entry.jpg

This rendering of the Reagan house in Lafayette, Louisiana, shows the thoughtful renovation of a mid-century modern home.
This rendering of the Reagan house in Lafayette, Louisiana, shows the thoughtful renovation of a mid-century modern home.
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LAab-Reagan-Residence-Bedroom.jpg

The Reagan house has yet to start construction, though Sullivan estimates it will be complete by the end of the year.
The Reagan house has yet to start construction, though Sullivan estimates it will be complete by the end of the year.
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LAab-Reagan-Residence-Plan.jpg

In addition to renovating the space, Sullivan is adding onto it as well. The house itself sits in a wooded area with the Vermilion River nearby.
In addition to renovating the space, Sullivan is adding onto it as well. The house itself sits in a wooded area with the Vermilion River nearby.
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LAab-LAmeetsLA-Bath.jpg

Sullivan's LA-meets-LA house is the only one that LA-ab has fully completed. Here we see the bathroom; transparent plastic furniture give a bit of contempo glitz.
Sullivan's LA-meets-LA house is the only one that LA-ab has fully completed. Here we see the bathroom; transparent plastic furniture give a bit of contempo glitz.
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LAab-LA-meets-LA.jpg

The 4,000-square-foot home was designed for a resident who didn't want to fully give up her Los Angeles lifestyle, despite moving to Louisiana.
The 4,000-square-foot home was designed for a resident who didn't want to fully give up her Los Angeles lifestyle, despite moving to Louisiana.
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LAab-LAmeetsLA-Gallery.jpg

The living room certainly has a distinct whiff of LA glam.
The living room certainly has a distinct whiff of LA glam.
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LAab-LA-meets-LA-Kitchen.jpg

I'm more fond of the kitchen, which shows quite a bit of restraint, letting the silverware on the wall do most of the aesthetic heavy lifting.
I'm more fond of the kitchen, which shows quite a bit of restraint, letting the silverware on the wall do most of the aesthetic heavy lifting.
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Here's the plan for the Marquis Loft, which Sullivan designed for a restaurateur to double as a residence and event space.
Here's the plan for the Marquis Loft, which Sullivan designed for a restaurateur to double as a residence and event space.

Check out the slideshow of his work and let me know if there are any spots in Baton Rouge I should not miss.

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