Homeowners in Ontario, Canada hired Dory Azar Architect Inc. to re-envision what a pole barn can be, with a modern twist. The Highway Pole Barn is designed specifically for the site it sits on. It’s surrounded by 64 acres of farmland, an extension of the owners’ home. The barn is used for family gatherings and vehicle and farm equipment storage.

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A red barn in the middle of a field on a clear blue sky with white clouds day

Designed to be a relative to the owners’ planned “cool, red carriage house,” this building is a contemporary take on a traditional building typology. 

“The design of the project could be considered shy or introverted, as its dark and subdued elevation faces the busy highway, while the bright and tall elevation reaches out to their acres of property,” Dory Azar said.

Related: The Barn is created with ethically-sourced, reclaimed timber

A red barn with a slanted roof has its doors open

The pole barn has a single-pitch roof built at an angle for maximum efficiency and future installation of solar panels. The building elevation is comprised of a series of windows that cascade toward the ground from west to east. Large windows were used in the gatherings areas of the barn, while smaller windows were used for more private spaces.

An up close of the red wooden panels that make up the barn

Traditional, wood-frame pole barn methods were used to build the structure. Additionally, metal siding was used to wrap it. The red color is a nod to the traditional color of wood barns. Overall, the effect of the building is the one that was intended: a blend of traditional and modern styles that look like an art studio or a modern take on a traditional garage.

A large tree with a red barn in the foreground

Furthermore, the private lower side of the structure faces the highway to create an open space on the other side for the family to enjoy away from road noise.

“The final build stands mysteriously, and yet confidently, along the busy road,” the designers said. “It anchors the site and provides the landmark for future planned projects on the same property, while giving the owners additional space to host gatherings, tend to gardens and enjoy spare time to foster hobbies and relaxation.”

A red barn has its lights on during the evening time

The barn not only allows for eco-friendly space to be added, but reimagines how a barn can function.

+ Dory Azar Architect Inc.

Images via Windsor Creative and Devon Pastorius