Duluth, MN | Residential / 2016


This project came to us with a tight budget and a tight lot. The owners wanted a house with contemporary flair, clean lines and an interesting form. They also wanted “better than code” levels of energy efficiency, and durable and low maintenance finishes.

The primary design challenge was to accommodate the owners’ desire for a very large garage, without it completely overwhelming the relatively modest house. Some fairly restrictive design covenants for the development added a few additional challenges too.

The two-bedroom 2-1/2 bath house has a walk-out basement that can be finished in the future to provide an additional bedroom and bathroom. Single stud walls with continuous exterior insulation and triple glazed windows provide an energy efficient enclosure.

Since one of the owners works in the building supply industry, they were active in the selection of building materials and finishes, and they worked directly with their builder to arrive at a number of pleasing details. The owner’s own interior decorating style is dynamic but tasteful, and compliments the home’s exterior aesthetic.

The exterior materials selected by the owners are in concert with the original shared vision for the house, and the finished home is the successful product of a coherent and collaborative group effort. The end result is a simple but interesting house that fits well in its neighborhood.