Text description provided by the architects. The design of the Lake Elmo weeHouse is a hyper-efficient home for clients who live in both Australia and Minnesota. The home was bound between several constraints: a modest budget, the flood plain below, and a 16’ maximum zoning height above. Nonetheless, the 990 sf box contains 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and ample open space.
It hovers lightly above the surrounding wetland on helical piers embedded 22 feet underground. A custom weathering steel and black cedar skin blends the house into the trees. Its wide enclosed deck and entry porch extend the living quarters out over the yard, bridging the transition from inside to out.
Inside, a white-on white palette is punctuated by a kitchen carved out of the core and highlighted in silver, a built-in bench to inhabit the wetland view at the hallway’s end, and two small but luxe baths. Mechanicals are tucked out of the way and accessed by a trap door in the kitchen. The house stays cozy with in-floor hydronic heat throughout.