The main home is situated on concrete piers and hovers above the rushing river with enough lift to sustain up to 500-year flood levels. Supported by a 15-foot deep steel Howe truss system at its center, the structure cantilevers at either end, benefiting from the cooling effect of the river at one, and preventing rattlesnake infestations at the other. The living area itself is comprised of three parts, each a separate building with its own heating and cooling system. Super insulated on all sides and independent of the steel bridge structure, they are connected by an unconditioned corridor and porch that can be opened up as needed for manual temperature and ventilation control.
Sitting roughly 1,000 feet up river from the main structure, the second building is constructed with a steel exoskeleton to cantilever 40-feet over the river. Apart from meeting specific building requirements, this provides a platform for viewing a rare Steelhead spawning pool below. Its overhanging design also accommodates an existing road along the riverbank, ensuring vehicle access was not cut off as a result of the renovation.
In addition to creating a super resilient structures, the scaffolding-like design significantly minimized costs to just $118 per square foot for the main structure, and $147 per square foot for the event space.
+ Paul F. Hirzel
Images by © Jim Van Gundy and ©Robert Hutchinson
Cool architecture--but what a blight for everyone except for the owners! Building so close to the water has an impact on not only river users or outdoorsmen, but also wildlife, even if it's all on private land. Shame on the owners for degrading a riparian habitat for the benefit of a cool building that is "above" the 500 year floodplain. Unfortunate to say the least.