Andrew Lee Architecture Andrew Lee Architecture

Oakland Hills 3

     The main part of this project was the addition of a second story comprising a master suite, as well as a home office and a comfortable sitting room opening to a deckā€”the lot is heavily wooded and the owners wanted to create a "tree house" feel. On the ground floor, the kitchen needed updating and the dining area was limited to a small space at one end of the kitchen.

     Dialogue with the owners and analysis of the site and floor plan suggested directions towards a solution. First, the lot directly south of the house is publicly-owned, so there was a great opportunity for natural light and views without the prospect of future construction. Second, a bedroom adjacent to the living room was little-used, and offered potential to serve as open-plan dining space as part of an enlarged living room. Finally, the owners' budget and desire to keep construction as far from the street as possible directed the overall size and location of the addition.

     The final design features oversized south-facing windows in the master bedroom and study. Design touches literally bring the trees into the house: a tree trunk hand-selected by the owners serves as a structural post at the new stairs, and a live edge wood slab offers a spot in the kitchen for breakfast. A local metalworker, friends of the owners, fabricated the steel "branch" railing.