This single family home is located on a steep West Vancouver slope with expansive views to the water of the Georgia Strait in the southwest and the city of Vancouver in the southeast. A series of transformations to a simple form embeds a rich and diverse experiential sequence into what could have been the typical hillside West Vancouver home.
-A raised portion of the main roof over the living spaces expands southern exposure to sunlight and views while accommodating north-facing automated clerestory windows for ventilation. -Inverted wood trusses drop into the box form to respond to north/south structural spans, creating voids for services and angled planes that reflect light into the core of the house. Supported on a large east/west steel truss with subsumed top and bottom chords, the webbing provides a graphic sculptural gesture that “bounces” across the 44’ wide span, producing unfettered access to the pool terrace. -An inward bend in this south-facing volume provides privacy from neighbours and differentiates the experience of the two main views. The resulting concavity disrupts the typical ‘full-frontal’ expression on the view side of the house, bringing the architecture into the context of the site. Extended east and west side walls and substantial roof overhangs offer additional privacy and mitigate solar gains. -Floors extending south create outdoor terraces that screen downslope development. A custom perforated guard uses a strategic transparent to opaque gradient pattern to further screen views below. -Two north-facing courtyards offer respite from the sunny south terraces, improve ventilation and natural light, and create backdrops for ornamental trees and sculpture. They also specifically reference the traditional internalized outdoor rooms typical of Iran, the homeowner’s native country. -The split level design allows for visual flow that interconnects all spaces and creates an informal livability.
The house expresses a dual nature. The grounded mass of in situ concrete walls largely delineate private and enigmatic east, west and north limits of the structure. White stucco panels and glazing are only hinted at. The west coast tradition of ‘glamorous’ hillside living that first and foremost takes advantage of views is only fully expressed in the elongated inwardly bent south elevation, using extensive matte white curtain wall glazing on the south elevation that facilitates indoor/outdoor connectivity.
The recyclable aluminum curtain wall system is low maintenance while argon filled, low-e glazing is performance based. The dispersal of operable windows throughout the open plan design also promotes natural ventilation. A heat pump heats and cools for environmental comfort, augmenting radiant in-floor heating and a gas fireplace. The thermal mass of several interior concrete walls significantly moderate the internal temperature. The pool is for seasonal use only and heats naturally due to its above ground condition of exposed concrete walls collecting the warmth of the sun.