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Pound Ridge House / Tsao & McKown Architects

  • 14:00 - 26 December, 2017
Pound Ridge House / Tsao & McKown Architects
Pound Ridge House / Tsao & McKown Architects , © Simon Upton
© Simon Upton

© Simon Upton © Simon Upton © Simon Upton © Simon Upton + 29

  • Project Manager, Architecture

    Jonathan Hoover
  • Project Manager, Interior Design

    Richard Rhodes
  • Contractor

    Prutting & Company
  • Project Manager

    Jack Truman
  • Structural Engineer

    Robert Silman Associates
  • Consulting Engineer M/E/P

    CES Engineers
  • Project and Cost Manager

    Gardiner and Theobold Inc.
  • Lighting Consultant

    WALD Studio, LLC
  • Geotechnical Engineer

    Geodesign Inc.
  • Window Manufacturer

    Quantum Windows & Doors
  • Specification Services

  • More Specs Less Specs
© Simon Upton
© Simon Upton

Text description provided by the architects. We designed this rural retreat for an aging couple, for whom we had designed two residences prior. Working at every scale of the project, including the architecture, interiors, custom furniture, and landscaping, we had the opportunity to fully address the needs of this long-term client with whom we have worked intimately over the course of twenty years.

© Simon Upton
© Simon Upton

With full awareness of how they live, work, and entertain, we conceived the furnishings simultaneously with the architecture.  The site is 30 acres, and house’s enclosed area is 2,900 square feet.

Floor Plan
Floor Plan

Inspired by traditional Japanese architecture, the house is formed of exposed timber construction which reduces the need for interior walls and opens the plan. The natural beauty of the crafted timber structure was enhanced through flaming to express the wood grain, and to naturally darken its surfaces to recede from view as it frames the floor-to-ceiling windows that overlook the gardens and surrounding woods.

© Simon Upton
© Simon Upton

Within the open plan, variations of proportion and light produce subtle rhythmic effects. Wooden slats direct views and cast patterns of shadow and light while screening certain windows for privacy. Two custom bronze chimneys hang from the ceiling in the centers of the living and sleeping areas, thereby maintaining views across interior spaces to the outside while defining areas of comfort and warmth around their hearths.


The house takes advantage of passive environmental approaches such as natural ventilation and light. In addition to the expansive sliding glass doors and windows, the design incorporates smaller floor-to-ceiling operable wooden panels for additional means of regulating ventilation.

© Simon Upton
© Simon Upton

Radiant geothermal heating and cooling help to achieve an energy efficient design despite the openness of the house and expanses of glass.

© Simon Upton
© Simon Upton

Two large asymmetrically shaped skylights were designed to optimize seasonal patterns of sunlight. Additionally, sustainable and low-energy materials were used throughout the house, most notably the timber frame construction made of local wood.

© Simon Upton
© Simon Upton

The home sits upon a glacial rock ledge on which the home’s foundation and timber construction are set. All excavated stone was reused in the gardens and landscape. To reduce the house’s footprint on the land, the exterior spaces are permeable softscapes that capture runoff water: wooden platforms, natural grasses, and recycled gravel. All plantings used in the landscaping are native species, except for one bonsai tree that was purchased at a nearby nursery.

© Simon Upton
© Simon Upton

Designing for social as well as environmental sustainability, the house is located on one floor, a conscious decision to accommodate the couple as they age. There are no steps to enter the house – a gentle ramp from the driveway to the front door is designed to ADA standards.

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Cite: "Pound Ridge House / Tsao & McKown Architects " 26 Dec 2017. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884
© Simon Upton

老人之家:闲云野趣,享天伦之乐 / Tsao & McKown Architects

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