Living lightly on the site was important to the owners due to their strong mandate for sustainability. As a retreat from urban life, the desire to become completely self-sufficient and independent from external infrastructure became critical in the design of a completely off grid residence. A two tiered approach was developed to take advantage of both passive strategies which work to reduce energy loads and augment comfort so that the active strategies are sufficient to provide for the remaining energy needs.
Set on the hillside overlooking the Shenandoah Valley near Durango, this home seeks to enhance the extraordinary scenery through the thoughtful integration of building elements with the natural assets of the site and terrain. A central open stair becomes an anchor that circulates movement, light and air into the living spaces that pinwheel and cantilever off into the landscape. The home easily accommodates the family by providing spaces for dinning, cooking, living, reading and sleeping which are carefully tailored to the unique view, light and breezes of the mountainside. To balance the mass of the stone fireplace; cantilevered volumes, flying roofs, and floor to ceiling glass are used to achieve a lightness of form and bring the views into the living spaces.