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The nature of THE PLACE

  • Located within a forest setting just outside of Portland.

  • South-facing forest setting on a moderate slope.

  • Tranquil location in the forest.

  • Natural springs nearby the house location.

  • Seasonal mountain views through the forest with a mix of deciduous and coniferous trees.

  • Occasional strong easterly winds from the Columbia River Gorge. 

  • Desired a net-zero ready design where solar panels could be installed in a future phase.




  • A semi-retirement home for a couple relocating to this area.

  • Continue to work at home.

  • To take advantage of the forest setting.

  • 3 bedroom, 2 ½ bath.

  • 2-car attached garage.

  • Design considerations for their pets with exterior dog rinses + walk-in shower inside for dog washing.

  • Net-zero ready construction techniques, processes, and materials.

  • Minimize maintenance.


  • Locating the house and tucking it back into a natural wind break area.

  • Entry drive courtyard on the west side so that it blocks the easterly winds.

  • House is oriented to buffet against the wind and create a courtyard that is buffeted from the wind.

  • Existing and new landscaping also used for wind buffering

  • Esthetic = modern stylized gabled NW style Modern home.

  • Exposed rafter

  • Exterior palette is vertical grained shou sugi ban (charred wood) vertical siding for its feel within the forrest and it’s maintenance and fireproofing abilities

  • Main living spaces with direct access to a covered deck.

  • Vaulted ceilings in main living spaces and main bedroom area.

  • A central 2-sided energy efficient wood burning fireplace anchors the main living space creating a modern, warm and inviting ambiance.

  • Gabled structure that deposits the most of the rain-water from the roofs then spills into a seasonal wet area containing rocks, ferns, moss which becomes a main entry feature as you enter the house.

  • Simple palette of wood, glass, concrete.

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