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I love the house with the glass box above grade (and in the middle of a well manicured lawn. It hints at the expanse of glass seen in the second photo facing the water and dock of the home "below" what a HUGE WOW!!!
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Bravehart Design Build
Good synopsis, Bud. The big idea must ring true and have authenticity.
However, in our view, the site conditions can dictate a story of equal consideration to the client lifestyle; past/present/future.

These are the two main governing factors, in the our firm's view, which can help illuminate the big idea.

We have encountered two projects recently where we have surprised even ourselves/ Design team and client team, and broken with 'the rules' of convention for the site/lot:

One project is a house facing a great lake, on a narrow lot. Normally, we would meet the client desire for a modern, open, 'sky-hugging' house design by focusing on the lake facing view (south). We would design a curtain wall face and a house with a backyard for a pool or secondary lounging space, as well as the roof top deck overlooking the lake.

However, in the case of this particular project site, the western light coming across all of the back yards facing the street, as well as from the yards on the next street perpendicular to the site, is absolutely stunning. Winter, Summer, Spring and Fall. We have watched the sky over a period of a year to understand this....

Therefore, we are considering an "L" shaped house for this lot; facing south and facing west, when all other builders in the town are just building the standard rectangular house with backyard.

The second project is in Toronto, a major city. The client site is a bungalow on a long, narrow lot with a 15' deep back yard immediately behind the long house and two substantially sized yards at west and east ends of the bungalow.

The client wants a yard for their children. So we are contacting the city zoning office to see if we can re-orient the site from a wide, narrow lot being accessed from the wide side - into a long, narrow lot - accessed from the narrow end!

Hard to describe, but a shocker to us all as the original thought by the client was to add a second level to the bungalow and be done with it. However, the more the client talked about privacy issues, with neighbours lot graded above his narrow back yard, and a neighbour deck looking into his current dining room, the more we all realized the existing site was oriented all wrong for a happy suburban experience including backyard playset and BBQing in privacy!!!!

So sometimes, the departure point can come as a complete surprise, even to those of us who have undertaken hundreds of projects over time!
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Patty Bransford
I have lived in England and have seen this. And I agree. I would love to have a home such as this!
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