Salt Lake City, UT
Imbue oversaw the design, construction documents, city permitting, and construction observation of this single family dwelling.
What do you do with a vacant 1.32 acre lot in the built-out-burbs of Salt Lake City? You construct a 3,800 sq ft residence of simple form, for a family of complex desires. The lower, massive volume extends eastward to the fruitful pasture. An open plan allows the floor to hold all familial gathering functions, which spills out to a large exterior living space. The upper volume, housing all the private spaces, cantilevers off the lower mass and shelters the patio below. All bedrooms face east, toward the glorious Wasatch Mountains; if you're not a morning person, you will be converted.
The project discussion started with the client's statement, “We are vodka-tonic fans, however this should be a beer and wine house.” Hosting friends and family becomes an event, where all can come together in one open space to enjoy each other's company. A twenty foot lift-and-slide door allows the interior space to extend to the fresh air patio, which houses a built-in cooking area and fire feature. Being able to take the party outside is important to these Black Rock City inhabitants, who enjoy sun salutations as well as strong libations.
Proximity to service connections didn't stop these homeowner's from disavowing the local, monopolistic utility companies. A tight building envelope, clad in four inches of expanded polystyrene brings the house beyond double the standard insulation values. Geothermal lines embedded in the site aid in heating and cooling the radiant system of the house. A heat recovery ventilator keeps air moving through the space, conditioning warmer spaces with cooler air from other portions of the house. Operable Floor to ceiling fiberglass windows in every room allow the occupants to control the diurnal mountain breezes without compromising U value. Triple-pane and quad-pane glazing diminish sound transmission as well as limiting unwarranted eastern summer solar gain.
Low maintenance materials was paramount for the client. Cementious plaster anchors the lower volume to the ground, while the upper volume is wrapped in burnt cedar. The port orford cedar is flash burnt to avoid rot, insects and any Black Rock training mishaps.
Location: Salt Lake City, UT, US
My Role: Designer
Additional Credits: Tall Pines Construction [contractor], Heliocentric [energy engineer], Shen Engineering [structural engineer]