This urban cabin concept is a fresh perspective on how to not only house people efficiently, but also retain and enrich the charm and character of a specific place, and to create homes, not just housing.
Our solution wrangles four dwellings into two duplexes with a central courtyard, gracefully adds density to support the nearby 6th Avenue business district, and riffs on the iconic gable house shape, ever present in so many of Tacoma’s neighborhoods. In a playful amplification of a familiar and simple form, the steep peaks employ scissor trusses as the roof structure to leverage the speed, simplicity, and greater energy-efficiency of truss framing while maximizing the interior volume. Windows, seemingly scattered about the facades, were carefully placed in consideration of sightlines to the adjacent homes.
The generous natural lighting, combined with the vaulted ceilings and open plan of the top floor make the kitchen and living area feel airy and spacious, especially so when the patio doors are open. The top floor decks are designed as outdoor rooms, or loggia, offering territorial and mountain views along with year-round usability.
While the roof peaks point skyward, the ground floor studios root firmly in the courtyard. In addition to enhancing the flow of air and light to each apartment as well as neighboring homes, the courtyard grounds the development with a shared outdoor space. Buffered from both street and alley by the duplex on either side, it’s equally well positioned for socializing with neighbors or quiet reflection.
Photos by Steve Campagna