Photo credit: Photos: Warren Diggles, Warren Diggles Photography Web
The Avalon project was designed as a speculation home for the developer of a new high-end development in the foothills of eastern Colorado. The speculation was that this house would most likely serve as a second/vacation home. The designer did a lot of research about the needs and expectations of those seeking this caliber of home. The client established a price range for the project and encouraged the designer to design the home from scratch as he chose, trusting him to create a product that would provide for the market they sought to satisfy.
There were three primary design challenges with this project all having to do with the building site. First, was the extreme slope of the building envelope. Second, was the fact the street access was below the building envelope, essentially putting the walkout on the street side. The more significant design challenge was the fact there were more than 210 degrees of views on the walkout side of the house, necessitating capturing views in every space possible. A straight/boxy design would keep the core of the design from seeing the views to the sides.
The steep slope was solved by providing multiple step-down areas throughout the main floor as well as an abnormally high basement ceiling. The streetside walkout solution was solved by creating a full round-a-bout driveway on the high side — the front — of the home, requiring the guests to travel all of the way around the home to reach the front door. Capturing views throughout the plan was solved by creating two wings that angle back to open the entire floor plan to the expansive views. Another significant design solution was to keep the overall design low in profile, to match the hillside on which it is located.