JMH Residence


Innovative design meets the challenge of urbanism on what once was a vacant, L-shaped lot between a quaint 1910 farmhouse and a grand 1918 brick 2½ story.  The house, long and narrow, 132 feet from the front porch to the two-car attached garage in the back yet only 28 feet at its widest point, fits on the oddly-shaped lot in a deliberate move to use the surrounding environment instead of shaping the land to suit to the design. Incorporating architectural features of the two adjacent homes, square windows and large porch overhang of the brick home are on the south side, while smaller windows from the farmhouse that once served as the land's homestead are featured on the north.  An exterior viewing deck on the northwest part of the home offers a panoramic view of the large backyard, the widest part of the lot's L-shape.  The size and placement of windows maximize daylight and minimize energy use; further investment in sustainable technology includes extra insulation and radiant heating for this closed-envelope construction.  Fiber cement siding and concrete block exterior walls with corrugated metal accents combine with a roof of rubber membrane and metal for a unique exterior look.  Inside, family and guests walk on polished concrete on the first floor and hardwood on the second.  A gallery extending the length of house on the north guides the eye to the back of the house to the focal point: a spiral staircase.  An interior catwalk connects upstairs bedrooms to the staircase, with an open view of the kitchen and dining area below, and a 10'x6' treehouse room is accessible by ladder above the children's bedrooms.


Image Credit: © Bill Sitzmann, © Contrivium Design + Urbanism