Ellicott City firm has a TV `role'

Architecture Collaborative designs an `Extreme Makeover'


When viewers of tonight's episode of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition watch workers build, decorate and furnish a home in one week, they will see the vision of Ellicott City firm Architecture Collaborative brought to life.

Each week, the program features a team of experts creating a dream home for a family in need.

Tonight's episode shows the construction of a house in Capitol Heights, in Prince George's County, that the program's Web site calls "a new haven for a single mother and her eight children who have overcome tremendous hardship."

Architecture Collaborative received a call from the show's producers in June and went to the location that day to talk with local officials and brainstorm a design, said principal architect David Robbins.

The firm completed the design and drew plans free of charge in two weeks rather than the usual 12, Robbins said.

Many details about the house are under wraps until the show airs, but Robbins said it includes some features that are popular today. It has a large front porch, an outdoor family space, bedrooms that share a bathroom suite and a third-floor loft.

He also said the house is designed to fit visually with other homes in the older neighborhood.

"It was a great learning experience," Robbins said. "It was great for our team to learn about teamwork and a tremendous experience working under tight deadlines and difficult circumstances to produce a real focused product."

Extreme Makeover: Home Edition airs at 8 p.m. tonight on ABC.


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