Albuquerque, New Mexico
3,868 s.f. private residence
Architect: Jon Anderson
Project Manager: Mark Harvold
General Contractor: Sunbelt Properties
Project Status: Built
Photographs by Kirk Gittings
This house is the result of the reinterpretation of the traditional New Mexican south-facing u-shaped house or “placita” within a contemporary semi-rural context, shaped by the needs of a family with three young competitive swimmer daughters. The property is at the end of a cul-de-sac nestled amongst the cottonwood trees that flank the Riverside Drain. A private gate provides direct access to the bike path that runs north/south along the Rio Grande River. The massing, materials, and colors are meant to speak to, but not mimic the heritage of agrarian adobe construction in an honest way where corners are squared and un-tapered. Walls and semi-opaque masonry scrims are arranged to orchestrate layers of privacy, play of light, and moments of allure. The courtyard remains the heart of the house providing light to the living spaces that embrace the pool and providing a private and safe refuge for the girls as they grow.
The plan wraps a courtyard with a direct southern exposure. The courtyard houses a 75 foot lap pool with perimeter deck and landscaping. The covered entry is on the north side with views into the courtyard area. The garage is also on the north side with the doors facing west to form a sheltered auto court. The master suite and four bedrooms line the west side of the courtyard. The living areas which are one large continuous space line the east side of the courtyard. A fireplace mass, open on both sides, divides the Family Room from the Kitchen. The Kitchen is wrapped on the other side with an olive green partial height wall that separates it from the formal dining area and living room. The kitchen is flanked on the east by a butler’s pantry and an outdoor barbecue and dining area. The family room terminates at the south end with a large covered area with a fireplace which is really an outdoor extension of the family room. This house including the finished garage, pool and site work was built for $134 per square foot.