Daniel Libeskin commented: “Tradition is a veiling of fiery origins.” We were looking into those origins as the Cambridge project began, inspired, in part, by Boston’s rich texture of flat-roofed “triple-deckers,” and a tradition of modernism in the region that often is overlooked. Although, at first glance the house may appear decidedly modern - Cambridge house examines that edge between tradition and modern. It seeks to both engage traditional forms and re-interpret what a modern house might be.
The street had grown busier over the years. Nearly constant traffic now makes its way past the suburban mix of colonial and ranch homes built, for the most part, in the 50s & 60s that frame the Fresh Pond Reservation and its golf course. Responding to the disruptive street noise we wrapped the house in a simple, protective red cedar plank box/ container. Trading-in traditionally heavily decorated wood cornices for clean metal wings with struts to protect the siding, and using clear aluminum storefront type windows in small punched openings and corner casements - tradition becomes contemporary.
A solarium with opaque glass marks the entrance to the main living space. Stepping across the threshold, one is taken-in by the expansive of vivid views, literally stepping into the outdoors through a sweep of floor-to-ceiling windows. Large glass panels with operable sidelights and sliding doors connect inside to outside at all levels. Decks and balconies extend the living space physically into this outdoor environment. The free flowing, open floor plan provides flexible living space on four levels.
The copper clad form of the house completely breaks out of the box as it wraps around this dynamic space and opens up to vivid views and nature. There is a wonderful feeling of transparency and the sense of living on a great stage, open to acres of rolling green fairways, views of Fresh Pond and Boston’s skyline in the distance.
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