The Greenwood House is a single family dream home located in Seattle, Washington that is surprisingly small. This 1725 sf contemporary home was designed by Malboeuf Bowie Architecture for efficiency and durability. At its essence the designers utilized a philosophy of sustainability. The home includes a design structure that maximizes the use of natural ventilation and recycled materials. It also has a high efficiency boiler that provides hot water for both household use and the home’s radiant heating system. With this efficient design and fabulous contemporary architecture, the home has achieved a feeling of spaciousness and aesthetic appeal.
The exterior of the home is clad with a delightful mix of texture and color that includes both cedar siding and fiber cement panels. I am a huge fan of fiber cement panels for their durability and modern appearance. Someday I hope to add them to the exterior of my own home. The circular window on the front facade looks into directly into the sleek modern kitchen which is covered by a green roof. This is an important and popular aspect of design in the Seattle area where they get more than their fair share of rain. The green roof helps minimize rain water run-off and subsequent erosion. For ease of maintenance, it is planted with succulents that require very little water and only 4 inches of soil.
When you first enter the home you are greeted by a fabricated contemporary steel staircase that leads to the second floor and acts somewhat as a room divider to separate the entry from the main living space. The floors throughout the first level are polished concrete, which are suitable for use with the radiant heating system. The kitchen and dining areas are directly adjacent and include copious amounts of storage space within the modern built-in white lacquered cabinetry. The cabinetry countertops help to visually differentiate the kitchen and dining room spaces. The dining room has a natural walnut countertop versus the kitchen’s all white solid surface counter and recycled content penny tiles as a backsplash. Both areas have a fabulous influx of natural light. The fabulous view of the backyard rain garden is visible from all of the living spaces on the first floor via the floor to ceiling windows and doors that line the rear exposures of both the dining and living room spaces.
The bedrooms and a family style bathroom are on the upper level of the home. The bedrooms are simple with a straight forward neutral color palette (low-VOC paint), a minimalist aesthetic, and renewable bamboo flooring. The bathroom has an electric radiant floor heating system, modern Duravit bathroom fixtures and recycled content mosaic tiles.
The rear patio of the home is made from concrete pavers which are spaced to allow walkable moss to grow between them, thus increasing the overall water permeability. Behind the living room area are a few stairs leading down to rain garden growing behind the home. The roof runoff is diverted to a concrete and pebble drain which leads to an onsite water infiltration system.