A fabulous Sycamore House, Los Angeles

20 July 2015 |

This unique house in Los Angeles called the Sycamore House was designed by Aaron Neubert Architects. It got its name after a sycamore tree that literally penetrates the house through a family room, a kitchen, a master suite and a roof deck.



The addition to the existing house has the area of 1,500 square feet. Its design was de­termined by the owners’ wish to renew the 1950’s residence with its posts and beams, as well as by the peninsular shape of the property and the intention to modify the house’s program distribution, at the same time respecting the initial character without strict replication.



The architects tried to harmonically blend the existing house, the sloping terrain, the site views and the street considering the owner’ requirement to preserve their favorite sycamore trees, including that one growing right at the site of the future addition.



The addition was positioned perpendicularly between the house and the street setback. This allowed to reinforce relationship between the interior and the landscape. The addition’s massing closes the living areas from the street and opens greatly to the hills. There is a number of cantilevers that extend over the hillside and projects the interior into the tree canopy.



A sycamore tree was incorporated into the addition – it penetrates the space through the family room, the kitchen, the master suite, and the roof deck as well.



Original posts and beams of the residence were restored with the help of incorporation of a primary steel cross-hair structure set below the second floor framing, which extends to the landscape on four sides of the addition.



The existing wood beams and the new steel structure were painted red; all fixed windows were painted black, and all operable windows and doors are made of a Douglas Fir. With the help of the materials, colors and forms the existing house and the addition are seamlessly merged with each other providing the ease of circulating between two buildings. Besides, the holistic site design strategies are additionally reinforced by the landscape and exterior patios.



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