The Burrow Residence
- Ward + Blake Architects
- Alta, Wyoming
The house was placed above the farmable portion of the site to preserve the original use of the property and carefully set into the hillside to bury the garage while opening up the upper and lower living areas to panoramic views. Taking into account the solar orientation of the site, the roof overhangs and decks extend to capture outdoor entertainment areas while providing passive solar balance between the seasonal extremes of summer and winter. The low slope roof minimizes impact on the neighborhood as it seamlessly blends into the hillside, quietly establishing itself among a series of gabled buildings in the community. The main living areas of the house stretch along an axis from the peak of Green Mountain on the southeast to the western summer sunset. The roof rises from the intimacy of the master bedroom to the grandeur of the living/ dining space, mimicking the cross slope of the site.
Combining steel, concrete, and weathered cedar the house has low maintenance requirements while a ground source heat pump, super insulation, and high-performance glass reduces the home’s energy footprint.
Tongue and groove cedar ceilings, polished concrete floors, sleek concrete countertops, and maple trim create an interior that exemplifies simplicity and sophistication. Custom finished steel railings, exposed structural connections and custom finished steel fireplace paneling add personality and character to an otherwise simple house.
Huge boulders were encountered in the excavation of the project and carefully relocated as landscape features on the site.
This project captures the amenities of the site in a sustainable and cost-effective design that fits beautifully in its surroundings. The house received a HERS score of 41, which means it performs 59% better than the International Energy Code.