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  1. ArchDaily
  2. Projects
  3. Houses
  4. Canada
  5. Nova Tayona Architects
  6. 2016
  7. Lockeport Beach House / Nova Tayona Architects

Lockeport Beach House / Nova Tayona Architects

  • 13:00 - 23 August, 2016
Lockeport Beach House / Nova Tayona Architects
Lockeport Beach House / Nova Tayona Architects , © Janet Kimber
© Janet Kimber

© Janet Kimber © Janet Kimber © Janet Kimber © Janet Kimber + 29

  • Team

    Nova Tayona, Rachel Law, Michelle Martinez
  • General Contractor

    Trunnells and Tenons Construction
  • Structural Engineer

    Andrea Doncaster
  • Custom Millwork

    The Wooden Menagerie
  • Diagrams / Drawings

    Andrew Falls, Tara Castator, Ram Espino
  • More Specs Less Specs
© Janet Kimber
© Janet Kimber

Text description provided by the architects. Within a protected cove along the South Shore of Nova Scotia, at the end of a stretch of sand, a river empties out into the sea. Time and tides have created a one kilometre forested sandbar on which this beach house sits.

© Janet Kimber
© Janet Kimber

Approaching the site is a parallel journey between a low-lying salt marsh to the north-west and the forested sandbar to the south-east. Along that journey, the beach is never in view, and so, the project is ironic as beach houses go. Despite the dramatic location on an expanse of shoreline, the clients were drawn to the internal, cozy character of the site. Scraggly, curmudgeonly tamarack and spruce trees covered in Old Man’s Beard are very particular to some areas of Nova Scotia and thrive in the 10 cm of shallow soil here. The trees shelter the site from the openness of the beach and defend against erosion of the sandbank. A mandate of protecting the sandbank, and the clients’ appreciation of hearing the ocean, but not seeing it were starting points for siting strategy. They did not want their new house to be on display from the beach.The most one sees of the water are moments of shimmering light filtered through the treeline at the site’s southern edge. The sound of waves pull one along a worn footpath through the tree line, towards a break in the vegetation that finally reveals the coast and ocean horizon. From these initial impressions, the house tucks itself against the forest, is hidden from the shore, and beach walkers plus the resident endangered piping plovers are none the wiser.

Floor Plan
Floor Plan

Skinned in black-stained eastern white cedar, the house recedes against the forest backdrop, and contradicts its bright interior. The design takes advantage of passive solar orientation, and catching light. At 10’ (3m) deep, the 48’ (15m) wide cantilevered roof overhang provides the perfect amount of shade in the summer, and allows the low winter sun to warm the concrete floors in the cold season. Not only does the asymmetrical gabled roof provide shelter and shade, it also leverages coastal storms, harvesting rainwater that is funnelled into three 1750 gallon (6600 litre) cisterns. The storage tanks are the sole source of potable water for the house.

© Janet Kimber
© Janet Kimber

To protect against storm surges, the house is elevated by a grid of helical piles bearing 6 meters down into the sand. Above the piles, the lightweight wood-frame structure houses a straight-forward, one-level plan. Bedrooms and private areas have low-ceilings and an intimate closeness with the trees and north-west light. The tall, main living area has a wide view to the south, towards a small clearing of beach grass and the tree-line separating the house and the shore.

© Janet Kimber
© Janet Kimber
Cite: "Lockeport Beach House / Nova Tayona Architects " 23 Aug 2016. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884