The client, a retired Army captain, asked us to design an urban loft on a steep, wooded, rocky site overlooking the Delaware River in rural Shohola, Pennsylvania. The house is an escape from New York City and a laboratory for ideas - a place to read and work, pace and think. A place where indoors and outdoors blur.
The design is made of two intersecting rectangular volumes.
The large volume (20' wide x 60' long x 18' high) on the main floor is an open, loft-like space. This wood framed volume is clad with wood siding and topped with an energy-saving green roof. The wood framed walls are made from standard length 2x8 studs packed with insulation. The floor is a radiantly-heated, insulated, concrete slab. All living functions are loosely arranged in this large volume. The interior finishes are plywood and cement board. There is no gypsum board or paint in the house. Continuous modular MDF shelving units run along the entire west wall, the east wall is composed with large and small window openings framing views to the river.
A small volume (16’ wide x 18’ long x 22’ high) intersects the large two story rectangle and houses all the “wet” functions - bathrooms, kitchen, mechanical equipment – as well as the second floor master bedroom loft. The east end of the loft cantilevers into the open height of the large volume. The small rectangle is also a heavily insulated wood frame clad in utilitarian metal siding - walls as well as roof. The 14’ wide window in the master bathroom frames a panorama of rock outcropping visible while soaking in the tub.
The house has 1,320 square feet on the lower level for the children’s bedrooms, 1,560 square feet on the main floor, and 440 square feet on the second floor master bedroom loft.
3,320 SQ FT / 308 SQ M