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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Telling a Story If the design scheme captures the character of this rolling field-and-forest landscape, the Douglas fir–framed structure describes how the buildings hold themselves up. "The most ubiquitous physical force we experience is gravity; architec- ture doesn't defy it; it describes it," Jim says. "The column goes to the beam, the beam goes to the rafter, the rafter carries the roofing, and the roofing keeps the rain out. We want to show how those things are connected. Not like Lincoln logs; it has to be fastened together with the human hand." Where there are glass walls, the columns and beams sit inside the glass, and the beams overhang the columns, which makes the beams stronger. The beam and column system "clarifies the nature of the columns and the loads, and it means the columns aren't the corner because the corners go to glass," Jim says. His design incorporated the owners' re- quest for "infinity" floors: the windows were dropped about eight inches below the floor surface, with a gap between the floor and window so that "it's like sitting on a platform," the husband says. With 569 pages of construction details, putting the house together was like solving a Rubik's Cube, says Bill White, project executive at A. Pappajohn Company, which built the Opposite and below: Meadow views are nearly as lovely as pond perspectives. A study looks across to the master bedroom wing. "Infinity floors" plunge corridors and rooms directly into the natural landscape. house. "We had to literally turn pieces to figure it out and every wall had a different nuance. Floor joists don't go to the windows, and doors are flush so that when you're walking down the corridor to the bedroom wing, you don't see the doors. We couldn't hire just any framer, and we had two su- pers looking over the details, because if anything was missed, it would come back to bite you every step of the way." Without traditional structural corners, the main living space's two 6-foot–by–12-foot sliding doors were hung from steel-reinforced, cantilevered beams. "In summer when the whole house is open, it feels like a big tent," the husband says. Four-foot overhangs on the south mitigate heat build-up in summer and admit precious sunlight in the winter. And a gi- ant maple shades the west side, where there are few windows. This net-zero-energy house also has about 2,800 square-feet of solar panels that send excess energy to the grid, and two solar hot water panels. A battery backup was also installed to run the house briefly if the power goes out. The clients' conservation ethic often collided with their wish for view corridors. "You run into massive conflicts to connect with nature," the husband says. "Seventy percent of the wall surfaces are glass, which is not good for insulation. But that was the point where we said, if we're going to spend 31 VOL. 1, 2018 RESIDENTIALDESIGNMAGA ZINE.COM

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