Residential Wood Design
Gulf Islands House, Mayne Island, BC
The program for this project is straightforward and the budget modest. The site is small and unremarkable except for a good aspect and presence of four old apple trees. Given these parameters, the objective was to derive maximum benefit from the sun and site, so orientation to the existing trees, to the sun, and cool breezes from the adjacent valley were carefully considered. Wood was used as the fundamental means of material expression. All elements that reinforce the architectural or environmental concept of the project are wood, and only local species are used in order to create a direct connection between the building, material and land that bears both of them.The roof and floor / deck create two planes that hover above the earth, provide environmental separation and mark the territory of the house.The heavy timber structure allowed for a continuous band of clearstory windows, eliminating the need for artificial light during the day, and facilitating passive solar heating in the winter.The key design elements are ten clear, vertical grained Douglas fir French doors all open to provide passive cooling throughout the house, even in the height of summer. The black stained cladding absorbs the suns heat on the coldest bright winter days. Poetically, it contains the life of the house, and is durable, functional and renewable.
Wood Materials used in the house are:
- Douglas fir glulam
- Douglas fir dimensional lumber
- Douglas fir plywood decking
- Douglas fir exterior doors & flooring
- Western Red Cedar cladding and decking
Matthew Woodruff Architecture Inc.
Suite 309, 318 Homer Street
Canada V6B 2V2J 1G5
Jones Kwong Kishi
Consulting Structural Engineers