The expansion of this family home addresses key siting issues with the original building, and activates its relationship to the surrounding natural beauty of its large lot.
A new double-height volume at the front adds a well-defined, welcoming entry sequence to the home. Once inside, the formerly closed off living/kitchen/dining spaces have been reimagined as a large great room with exposed wood carpenter trusses, which opens to a new, cantilevered deck and patio. From all these spaces, the family now enjoys more access to southern light and views toward Mt. Tamalpais.
To make the most of the property’s downslope, as well as a former crawl space, we carved into the hillside to create a new lower level addition with direct rear yard access, and an internal stair to the main floor’s skylit hall. The yard, patio and deck flow together via paths and stairs as one outdoor living space.
Simple, local materials on the interior include reclaimed oak and clear douglas fir, complimented by board-form concrete retaining walls and darkened steel. Special wood details lend warmth and unique personality throughout, conceived of through an enjoyable, collaborative process with the contractor. The house features sustainable systems such as radiant heating and a passive cool sink.
The downslope site required a solution for water control and drainage concerns, which we addressed with a civil engineer and landscape architect by creating bioswales and bioretention areas, as well as by employing permeable pavers, a grass play lawn and green roof. The property is in a Wildland Urban Interface area, so only non-combustible materials were used on the exterior. The trees on the site were protected from construction activity.