- Type: Single Family Residential
- Location: Los Angeles, California
- Project Team: Dion McCarthy
- Landscape: Michael Schneider
Orange Street Studio
- Builder: Paul Kambur
Kambur Construction Group, Inc.
2003 Merit Award in Design, Orange Street Studio
American Society of Landscape Architects
The commission for this 4,300-square-foot residence came with significant challenges for the architects – a house had once existed on the lot but had burned down and the attempt to replace the house had stalled, leading to an abatement order and a lapse of permits.
Our first challenge was to revive the lapsed construction permit by proposing to “modify” the existing structure. The practical effect this had was to fix the footprint of the new home to the existing structure’s plan outline. Having thereby inherited the large, dense block of the original house, the new strategy became one of substituting selective areas of indoor space for outdoor courtyard.
This strategy of trading indoor space for outdoor courtyard allowed an erosion of the formerly monolithic structure into a series of distinct volumetric elements, and further suggested that the architectural pieces could cohere as a “village.” The main level is further eroded by large, glazed planes, merging indoor with outdoor, and virtually stretching the landscape across interior space. Moving the detached garage from the rear yard to beneath the new living space allowed for a 75-meter lap pool and a shaded olive garden.
The gardens include built-in seating, extensive use of ornamental grasses and Zen-like interior courtyards. A material palette of fossilized stone, bonderized-galvanized metal, and natural Douglas fir allows for the warmth desired by the wife, while providing the modernity required by the husband. Programmatically, her music room borrows from the calm and protected olive court in the rear, while his office becomes a pavilion set in the landscape, which both addresses the street and acts as a sheltering monument for the terraced entry garden.Share: