Katrina Live/Work Units meet all of our normal Live/Work design requirements and limitations detailed here, and they also meet other standards to allow them to be manufactured off-site as well as built on-site so that they qualify as Katrina units.
VERY IMPORTANT: Some jurisdictions treat Live/Work Units like townhouses, and allow you to purchase stock plans like the ones an this website and use them to build with. Other jurisdictions treat Live/Work Units like larger mixed-use buildings and require a locally licensed architect. This usually happens when you are building several units as a single construction project. Please verify this with your jurisdiction before doing anything else! Steve Mouzon is a licensed architect in some states, but chooses not to provide full commercial services in order to pursue Mouzon Design’s other initiatives. In those instances, you need to hire an architect. Steve might be able to serve as a design consultant to your architect, however, if you like the ideas you find in these plans... depending on his availability and on the rules of your state’s regulations regarding architects and design consultants.
Katrina Live/Work Units, as you might suspect by now, are limited to a 16 foot shipping width, so we use a box width of 14 to 15 feet to allow for roof overhangs, etc. There are at least two boxes (one living unit and one shop) for every Katrina Live/Work Unit.
The basic Katrina Live/Work Unit shape is a gable-front two-story building with living unit above and work unit below. This building sheds water to either side, so it should not be built attached to another such building. As a result, building nothing but basic Katrina Live/Work Units leaves gaps between the buildings. This is a normal condition for a town in its early years. Years later, because they are portable, Katrina Live/Work Units can be moved elsewhere to make way for more permanent masonry buildings. Many an American town has been built exactly this way. Between the initial Katrina Live/Work Unit state, with gable-front buildings creating the Main Street with gaps in between, and the final Main Street built of masonry buildings, there is an intermediate condition that allows the buildings to be attached, creating a better sense of enclosure along the Main Street.
This intermediate condition involves adding one-story additions such as the one pictured here that may connect to adjacent buildings. In order to shed water, the one-story additions may either have a mono-pitch roof sloped to the back, as pictured here, or they may have a gabled roof with the eaves to the front and back.
One major benefit of the one-story connector additions is that because they are shorter than the main building, they create courtyards behind them that may either be used by the shop, in the case of a business like a restaurant that needs courtyard seating, or they may be used by the residence.
Katrina Live/Work Units also make great liner buildings when the main building is turned sideways, hiding parking lots and creating lots of storefront.