Residential Design

Vol 1, 2018

A business-to-business magazine focused on the collaborative process and talented work of residential architects and custom homebuilders.

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N ceived notions of what their house will look like. "We're okay designers but are really good at revealing what's beautiful in the living world," Jim says. "The clients had deep empathy for that and backed us all the way." After interviewing dozens of architects over a five-year period, the husband-and-wife clients chose Jim not only because they liked his aesthetic, but also because of his experience with environmentally smart building systems. The husband, a longtime environmentalist, was familiar with LEED construction through his involvement in a number of conservation organizations. "I wanted to put that knowledge I gained into my own home," he says. He and his wife had developed five design criteria for their dream house: a low-maintenance exterior and interior; no petroleum products used for heating or cooling; the use of only wood, glass, stone, or steel; the use of passive systems to move water and capture as much energy as possible—and, of course, a strong connection to nature. In the 1960s, an ar- borist living in the site's previous house had planted beautiful specimen trees such as tulip poplars, maples, and Douglas fir, which were now in their mature glory. View Finder The new house's axis is oriented south, and its public spaces have a long, controlled view of the meadow and lower pond. Following the natural grade, you enter from the west on grade, but as you follow the axis east, the land drops away toward the forest. This is where Jim placed the two children's bedrooms and the master suite, lifting them as a unit on concrete piers so that the house's elevation does not change from one end to the other. Bedrooms are private spaces, he says, and he used the land's existing contours to enhance that quality. "Keeping the bedrooms off the ground was important for us because bed- rooms are a place to sleep, and if you are going to experience the landscape, you want to have the windows open and not use curtains," Jim says. "Bedrooms need to have a sense of defen- sibility. We were moving into a small area of forest, so if we rotated the building just right, we could locate those bedrooms through the trees and didn't have to cut any down." At almost 8,000 square feet, the house is large, but it's separated into three pieces—four if you count the clever entryway—arranged along an axis and cross-axis. Visitors park their car in a brushy thicket a short distance from the FLOOR PLAN | 1. Entry | 2. Living Room | 3. Study | 4. Master Suite | 5. Children's Rooms | 6. Guest Room & Nanny's Room | 7. Garage | 8. Pond 1 2 3 4 5 5 6 7 8 24 RESIDENTIALDESIGNMAGA ZINE.COM VOL. 1, 2018 CASE STUDY

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