Photo © Micahl Wyckoff
Photo © Micahl Wyckoff
Photo © Micahl Wycoff
Photo © Micahl Wycoff
Photo © Micahl Wycoff

Lake Conroe

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Located on Lake Conroe, north of Houston, this recently completed residence depicts one of NANO’s proudest moments. Working closely with the owners, the design team developed a site strategy fully integrated to the advantages and challenges of the development guidelines and site attributes to develop this unique residence within the private Bentwater Community.

This 5,500 SF contemporary residence on Lake Conroe was designed around two primary features – the first was the development of a suspended office space within the triple height space. Stealing a maneuver from Louis Kahn, the resulting atrium platform is interpreted as a second floor (as stipulated in the development guidebook of maximum height) while delivering the spatial quality and views requested by the owners and seized upon as an opportunity by the design team.

The second challenge was environmental. After viewing multiple possible sites, it was agreed that the selected site met all the clients’ needs except one – the view towards the lake would have the most glazing and would be facing almost dead west into the setting sun. By varying the angles of the various living spaces, some solar gain would be alleviated, while also emphasizing varying angles of vision and privacy concerns. The solution was to install high performance curtain wall and storefront systems, in combination with screening devices and insulated metal framed tubes to reduce solar and thermal gain.

After an intensely hot summer and last year’s hurricanes, the project has performed as desired and expected, resulting in the same utility bill amount as in the spring.
The project is further accentuated by its inclusion of a courtyard and separated public entry. Part of this was the creative interpretation of the design guideline, but also reflects a desire of the client (originally from New Orleans) to have a garden courtyard, as well as a largely “see through residence” while maintaining a level of privacy from the street level.

Finally, the first floor glazing folds and slides away to bring the entire lake front and associated exterior pool and exterior kitchen into one continuous space.

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