Saturday, December 05, 2009


This new residence is located on a pristine site comprised of a mature douglas fir and pacific madrone forest, with occasional rocky clearings and several small ponds. The site is ecologically sensitive, with bald eagle nests and trees prone to blight if disturbed. Further, soil coverage is minimal over the native basalt, therefore stormwater management is a serious concern. Our clients desired a work of architecture that took into consideration these constraints and minimized site impacts while creating a work of architecture that utilized their favorite materials (wood and concrete) and connected them intimately with the land and the view. The home is situated where the forest gives way to a large rocky clearing with views to the sea. The structure is ‘wrapped’ around a prominent outcropping of rock and carefully situated to require a minimum of tree removal. The long, narrow footprint of the home allows every room a view of the sea while also retaining a strong connection to the surrounding forest. Strict site access protocols were put in place for the duration of construction in order to minimize site disturbance, and the landscape has been carefully restored. To eliminate stormwater issues, rain leaders have been piped to a nearby pond for natural filtration and dispersion. Where this was not possible due to grades, a garden roof was utilized to slow runoff.
Project Location: Orcas Island, Washington
Contractor: Ravenhill
Square Footage: 3,000 sq. ft.Completion: 2009
Photography: Ben Benschnieder
Many thanks to Joeseph at HELIOTROPE for the images and project desciption...


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