California’s Montrose Duplex began as a simple garage, housing the client’s electric vehicle and charger. Wanting to turn the structure into a green residence, they turned to WTARCH to make the transformation. With zoning restrictions in check, the firm topped the existing building with a loft space to create an open and airy residence.

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The environmentally conscious clients wanted a livable space that could be compacted into the small existing lot, while also employing sustainable building practices. To create a roomy living space, WTARCH added a 484 square foot loft on top of the garage. Because of an existing tree on the lot, the architects had to build around and above it, creating a twisting structure that reaches to meet the sun for maximum natural lighting. The top floor extends with a giant window, giving the room a view of the treetops and plenty of light.

Along the roof, a series solar panels provide energy to power the home that has been constructed from non-toxic and renewable materials. Part of the roof over the garage is capped with greenery that is able to keep the interior cool and collect rainwater. The rear of the structure hosts an edible garden and composting pile for the couple to share, and a courtyard flower and vegetable garden yields produce to be enjoyed.

A slim spiral staircase connects the floors and emulates the twisting of the structure itself. Blonde wood flooring and white walls help accentuate the natural light of the space, creating the illusion that the former garage is larger than it actually is.

The wood siding clad Montrose Duplex hardly looks like its former self, having been successfully transformed into an airy green home.


Via Arch Daily