On Fire Island, the Beach Walk House

General / People / Places / July 9, 2012

The Beach Walk House was like a huge, three dimensional puzzle, says architect Coty Sidnam of SPG Architects.

The challenge was to squeeze 3,600 square feet and five bedrooms into a tight site behind a sand dune, and make it look like it hadn’t been squeezed at all.

“That’s what drove the form and the design,” she says of the home she designed for a single father and his four adult children in the village of Saltaire on Fire Island. “It was fairly tight zoning, with FEMA rules and maximum height requirements by the village.”

The client wanted a home where all five could gather on weekends, and enjoy the best possible views.

Sidnam sought to unify inside and outside, with large openings that embrace and frame sweeping vistas of the ocean.  Because the only available ocean view from the site was to the south/southwest, he canted the home’s footprint so that the major living room/dining room window points straight in that direction.

The structure itself is made up of three rotated cubes, elevated above the ground level.  They interconnect but remain independent in individual forms.

“They’re clearly defined rectilinear forms – they relate to each other, but they’re complete in their expression,” she says.

The volume at grade is delineated by dark, vertically slatted, wood breakaway walls, which obscure the support pilings and provide storage for water sports equipment. The center volume, clad in horizontal wood siding, houses bedrooms & baths and provides roof decks for the living level. The metallic clad upper volume contains a large, open-plan living space with spectacular water views.

For more information, go to http://www.spgarchitects.com/

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Michael Welton




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