One of the sure-fire ways of designing a cool looking building in graduate school was to be infected with the Hyper-Attenuated Building Syndrome (HABS). Any project can be made absurdly long and skinny and by violating any notion of “pleasant” golden-section-type proportions, it instantly propels a project from everyday to extraordinary. Mind you, this was simply grad school students messing around. However, the Hyper-Attenuated Building Syndrome is no laughing matter:
Japanese architects are particularly susceptible to HABS but it was not uncommon in nineteenth century Europe:
and pre-colonization America:
The most marked sympton is a building exceeding a 10:1 length or height to width ratio. If that means the bedroom is bunkbeds for his-n-hers, so be it, this is an affliction after all. (Bridges of course don’t really count as they kind of need to be long and skinny. It is really dependent on the inappropriate length to width ratio that we need be wary of).
As Boulder has a fairly universal 35′ height limit, we are generally immune to the vertical expression of the affliction. However, an ongoing project that I am working on has a building envelope that is so severe it may have to be looked at by a HABS practioner:
This advanced case is 9′ wide by 127′ long – House for an Archer.