DRW ARCHITECTURE BLOG

Grant Park Residence Complete

Half a year has flown by since we started designing the Grant Park Residence's kitchen remodel.  It's finally been completed with just a couple of finishing touches left.

For the center of the kitchen, the clients' opted for a table in the center of their kitchen to act as both an island for counter top utility and informal seating for everyday meals.  The kitchen sink, a deep drop in cast iron piece, is framed by the tall custom cabinetry for plenty of storage.  The clients have a beautiful garden in their back yard that they enjoy so we installed tall windows behind the range and put them into a deep 30" counter. There is also a small prep sink nearby to fill pots and wash items.  

The end of the sink wall houses the refrigerator and pantry space. The pantry cabinet also houses the microwave and contains (2) deep pull out drawers below and (1) short pull out drawer above for visibility and ease of access. More tall storage cabinets sit above the pantry and refrigerator. 

A desk nook was built with adjustable shelving to frame the window. The desktop is crafted from reclaimed wood from the house. The original old wood was too good to pass up. 

Deschutes Residence Up to Date

As promised, here is the latest on the Deschutes Residence to bring everything up to date.  

Below are some more detailed images to show progress on the residence's fireplaces. The exterior patio's fireplace is currently under construction and will be made of board formed concrete. The living room fireplace and master bedroom fireplace are made of dry stacked stone.  The living room fireplace anchors both the entry axis and the circulation axis. The entry axis continues straight through the living area and dining area and finally out to the view of the Cascade Mountains. 

Deschutes Residence, now with color.

It's been a while since we've had an update on the Deschutes Residence. These photos were taken at varying stages of progress a few months ago. We'll have another update the week of October 12th to share the current status, but in the meantime, enjoy! 

Deschutes Residence

Work is continuing at the Deschutes residence, which is now approaching its final form. Since our last update the majority of the framing has been completed, and installation of the roofing and windows has begun.

Goose Hollow Heights Complete!

We completed our work at the Goose Hollow Heights a couple months ago. The project included an interior remodel to create a kitchen and breakfast nook more in keeping with the style of the house, as well as the addition of a new mudroom.  Major bearing walls were removed and replaced with new beams, in order to open up the interior layout. New windows were added in the kitchen to replace an unsympathetic window and door system added during a previous remodel. The cabinets were custom built for the project by our frequent collaborator Crownwood Construction.

Nettle Creek Residence

Work recently came to a close at the Nettle Creek Residence.  The owners were looking for a kitchen upgrade. The space was originally split in half with hanging upper cabinets creating a cramped U-shaped kitchen and small dining area. The heaviness of the space was amplified by the use of dark stained wood. 

The goal was to open up the space and bring in more of the nice southern light.  We removed the hanging cabinets and the soffits, widened the windows to open up the views, and installed new french doors to the deck.   New appliances and finishes rounded out the kitchen remodel.

 The final touches will include a dining table set at the end of the island and new hanging pendant lights over the island.

 

Deschutes Residence latest

We're excited to see our Deschutes Residence take form. When we visited on a beautiful day at the end of January most of the exterior walls were complete  and framing of the roof had just started.

Goose Hollow Heights Framing

Our Goose Hollow Heights project is progressing rapidly.

The house was originally built in 1914, and has been remodeled a number of times. These remodels included an addition to the house for the kitchen, which was built in 1989. Unfortunately, the cumulative effect of the various remodels was a ground floor layout which made poor use of the available space, and devoted a lot of area to circulation. The major part of our work is to open up this layout and create a more efficient kitchen with a new breakfast area. We are also adding a new covered entryway and mudroom at the southwest corner of the house.

Since our last update, the covered entry and mudroom addition has taken shape:

At the interior we had to deal with removing the original bearing walls. 12" deep glulam beams are now carrying the loads from the floor and walls above:

Corbett-Terwilliger Progress

The Corbett-Terwilliger Residence is nearing completion, and was looking beautiful on a sunny day back in October. One of our carpenters, Lindsay, was busy installing cedar shingles at the front porch, which is one of the last areas of exterior work.

The biggest change since our last update earlier this year is to the interiors, where we have concentrated our work on finish carpentry. The windows and doors throughout the house are cased with fir trim, and the stair hall has custom fir wainscoting.

The kitchen cabinets, built by our frequent collaborators Skyline Fine Cabinets, have all been installed.

Goose Hollow Heights Project Underway

Construction has recently begun on this 1914 Portland home with breathtaking views in the hills above Goose Hollow. 

The majority of the work will involve adding a mudroom entry to the south side, as well as a full kitchen remodel. This involves a tear down of the interior, as well as some light excavation on the exterior. 

Working on a home that is 100 years old can present challenges, especially when you start opening up walls and seeing all the work that has been done in the past. Fortunately, our crew and dedicated team of subcontractors has years of experience dealing with architecturally significant homes such as this one, and construction is steadily progressing. Stay tuned for updates as we follow the progress in the coming months. 

Alphabet Condo, update

Work is drawing to a close at the Alphabet Condo, which we posted about early last month. Since then, tile and countertops have been installed, which complement the existing architecture of the space very nicely.

Deschutes Residence

We are currently working on the design for a new house in rural Deschutes County, near Bend. The clients are good friends of drw, who we previously designed a house for when they lived in Portland.  Since then, they have relocated to central Oregon, where they recently purchased a plot of land.  They approached us last year to design a new house for the site, to replace an existing manufactured house on the site.  The design makes reference to the agrarian landscape of Central Oregon, with references in its form to the graceful barns found in the area. The 1st floor walls will be stucco, with areas of cedar siding; and the second floor cedar siding. The roof will primarily be slate, with the dormers accented in standing seam metal.

West Elevation

On a recent trip to Bend, we visited the site with the clients to stake out the location of the house on the site.

The site is surrounded by mature juniper trees to the east, which will remain after construction. To the west, the house will face onto the owner's agricultural land, with views towards the Cascades.

ALPHABET CONDO

Since the start of the year, we've been working on a remodel of condo in NW Portland's Alphabet District. It's a beautiful building, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. After buying the unit, our clients approached us with a number of improvements they wished to make before moving in, including a complete remodel of the kitchen and bathroom, as well as new cabinets for the living room and master bedroom.  After the inevitably messy phases of demo and rough plumbing / electrical, we've begun to move into finish work.  Mostly recently, the kitchen cabinets, built by Crownwood Construction, arrived on site, and it's now possible to see what the project is going to look like.

CHECKING IN ON THE CORBETT-TERWILLIGER HOUSE

The Corbett-Terwilliger house is coming along nicely. The exterior siding is completed and the crew has moved onto the interior trim. Cabinets are scheduled to be finished any day and the kitchen should be up and running soon. 

 John basking the pacific northwest sun

John basking the pacific northwest sun

Looking Back at 2013

 Skyline Residence Kitchen

Skyline Residence Kitchen

It's been another busy year for drw design build. A lot has happened since our last summary in 2012:

Corbett-Terwilliger Latest

It's a while since we last checked in on the progress at the Corbett-Terwilliger house. Since then, the majority of the exterior work has been completed, including new custom windows built by the homeowner.

The interiors are coming along nicely, and we hope to have a photo update shortly. 

Westover Residence Renovations

drw design build is about to begin demolition on a new renovation project in the Northwest area of Portland.  The residence is beautiful and solidly built 1911 Tudor Home situated on a sloping site.  The new owners have hired drw to expand and update the kitchen, as well as other improvements through out the home.  The design will blend with the traditional elements of the home while providing modern amenities and generous work space.

Playing tetris with cabinets

Work is progressing well on our latest remodel, a new kitchen / pantry / mudroom / office near Council Crest.  For the last few months we have been busy demolishing walls and framing new ones; moving mechanical ducts and equipment; installing new plumbing and electrical; hanging sheetrock; and laying new floors.  It is an intense process, but always hugely rewarding to see a design leap off of the page and into reality.  While we were doing this work in Portland, the cabinet makers in Eugene were busy building the cabinets, which arrived on site this morning.

Everything we do is totally custom, and designed specifically for the clients we are working with. Early on in the design phase, we will concentrate on general issues, such as overall layout and locations for major appliances.  Once this is settled, we begin to get into more detail, and often work out what each and every drawer is going to be used for, and how large it needs to be as a consequence. While we are doing this, we are always thinking about how these cabinets will physically be built and transported to site. A good rule of thumb is that nothing should be longer than 8'-0", which is a standard dimension for a sheet of plywood. In at least one direction, the cabinets should be smaller than 30", so that they can fit through a standard width doorway.

Many banks of cabinets are larger than this though.  At the Fairmount Boulevard house, the kitchen island, for example, will be 18' long and 4' wide.  We therefore work out ways to break this down into smaller components, in a way that will look deliberate in its finished configuration. This is how the cabinets arrive on site, as seen in the photos above, before they are installed. As we have mentioned before, assembling these all on site is a bit like a game 'Tetris', and there's often little room to maneuver around the cabinets.  There is a lot of work involved in the install, particularly when everything is designed for tolerances to an 1/8".  The effort required, however, is worth it.