The project design integrates program and site with structural forms inspired by the towering mature redwood grove bordering its southern edge. Situated high in the Oakland/Berkeley Hills, this magnificent 2.19 acre site slopes sharply to the west with stunning bay views while abutting the East Bay Regional Park on the north and east.
Given this unique setting, a series of 2 and 3 story board-formed concrete core walls and columns were established to support 3 clear-span floor plates stepping down the hillside. These concrete elements have been scaled to achieve a harmonic counterpoint alongside the redwoods – neither to overwhelm nor be overwhelmed. While doing so, they support the program’s massing allowing it to be sculpted to the site –
– With the land and water elements running through the structure as it terraces down the hillside
– Enabling all three levels to be accessed from existing grade
– Allowing for a quieter, two story residential scale on the eastern entrance facade which unfolds into a bolder, 3 story sun-shaded western elevation with magnificent views of the bay.
– Preserving all the site’s trees and integrating several wonderful oaks into the design – one of which becomes part of the upper level bedroom balcony
Additionally, as the site extends through the main residence, a lower, detached concrete and glass pool house is tucked into the slope such that it is invisible from the arrival entry court above.
The project utilizes simple, natural exterior materials including, wood (cedar siding), board formed concrete, cement plaster with acrylic finish coat, and trellis shaded aluminum, high-performance glass windows and doors. Its highly efficient electric heat pump system is supplemented by solar panels with battery backup.