Architect: AAA Architecture with Benjamin Parco, AIA
Photographer: AAA Architecture
The homeowners met with several architects before connecting with the team of AAA Architecture and Benjamin Parco, AIA who convinced them to explore new possibilities and create an unexpected design that makes no apologies for its modernity. Materials were chosen to provide hints to the history of the site and to create an energy efficient result. Extensive site planning studies resulted in a separate guest house and a garage building that creatively maximized living space on the lot.
At its center, the home features a two-story breakfast room flanked by front and rear courtyards. Ground floor walls are oriented to maximize views and are built from rigorously defining masonry. Exterior walls are buttressed at regular intervals to subtly define spaces and eliminate the need for flow interrupting interior walls.
The second floor, clad in charred cedar, consists of four boxes balanced on the masonry base. Three bedrooms and an office include large glass windows with projecting metal shade hoods and operable louvers, taking advantage of views to the San Francisco Bay while modulating glare from the western exposure.
The choice of concrete masonry allowed for a bold architectural statement that also conveys permanence. The integral insulation of the wall masonry created energy efficiency sufficient to allow large glass windows while maintaining the home’s Green Point rating. Other impact reducing features include zoned HVAC, under-slab radon venting and drought tolerant landscaping. The home significantly outperforms the state’s Title 24 requirements.