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west highland ave

west highland ave

The West Highland Ave Residence is a carefully crafted example of expanding a small home to meet a growing family’s needs. The architects faced the challenge of adding a new kitchen, living room, mudroom, entrance, and second-floor primary suite to the existing 1930s brick farmhouse while respecting the original structure.

The team designed a transitional addition in a narrow gap that bridges the 1990s garage to the original home – a formidable task. The principal program element – the kitchen was designed with a panoptic position so the mother could watch her children anywhere in the house or backyard. Moreover, the house was given a new entrance cloaked with fiber cement siding, metal roofing, and Andersen windows. Inside the home, the original small kitchen and dining room were converted into a spacious dining room. At the same time, a high-performance rainscreen exterior wall with mineral wool continuous insulation over an air-tight, water-resistive barrier was used to improve the home’s efficiency.

The owners also needed another bedroom, bathroom, and more living space provided by the addition. The team incorporated various sustainable features besides the high-performance rain-screen envelope, such as an ERV unit for fresh air exchange, hot water radiant heat, passive solar strategies, and the obvious one -the reuse of an existing home. The addition was also outfitted with quartzite kitchen counters, LVT flooring, and plaster walls. The plumbing fixtures and high-end appliances complement the careful attention to detail in each corner of the structure. Adorning each room is black and bronze lighting fixtures.

Found in Ebensburg, PA, this house is a beautiful example of modern-day green architecture that meets the demands of a growing family. The architects have successfully balanced the need for spacious living with today’s sustainability needs while still paying homage to the original structure.

Project Type: Single Family House – Renovations and Additions
Project Size: New Additions – 1,605 SF, First Floor Renovations – 957 SF
Completion: 2022
Photos: Skysight Photography
General Contractor: J. Cyran Construction, Inc.
Structural Engineering Consultant: Anderson Structural Inc.