The challenge was to create an open, light-filled house that blended into the site. The site is a beautiful Minnesota coulee enclosed on three sides by heavily wooded bluffs. The north end opens to views of the Mississippi River valley. The 40 acre site is covered with native oak, hickory, and birch trees.
The owners’ sense of home was satisfied by adopting a Prairie Style motif. The plan is zoned into three distinct –yet connected – spaces to house the children, the parents, and the family. These zones are distinguished by their differing levels which relate directly to their location on the hillside. The offset connections create a variety of interesting spaces and help articulate the scale of the home. Each zone is capped by a hipped roof with broad overhangs. The natural wood and stucco of the exterior is detailed to visually tie together the three zones.