GPA: High Desert Modern

March 1, 2016

Ever wonder about working with a great firm that isn’t in the same place as your project? Thanks to evolving technologies, we are currently bringing our interactive, hands-on approach to clients in regions as diverse as Napa Valley CA, Bend OR, and the east coast of Lake Michigan. We call it our GPA policy: as in, we embrace Great Projects (and Great People!) Anywhere they take us. In this section of the DA blog, we’ll be sharing some “GPA’s” and the tools we’ve developed to make them a Great Success. First up: High Desert Modern.

The project started when a colleague and her partner asked us to design an elegantly simple modern getaway overlooking a State Forest in Bend Oregon. The view, and the vision, were stunning. Making the most of them required close collaboration and remote navigation of a complex local design review process.

We kicked things off with a full day on site—meeting with the clients, talking with local builders and researching the natural and built environments. As the design developed, we worked closely with the contractor via online meetings and sent the clients ‘walkable’ 3D models to view on their home computer. Thorough site documentation makes it easy to place the house virtually in its context, although with a location like Bend nobody complains about the occasional site visit! Now that construction is under way, we leverage in-person meetings with steady phone and video conferencing. Here’s a peek at the progress:

Setting the formwork for the foundation

Framing the house (and the view!)

Framing the house (and the view)

Over recent months, the house has been “dried in” and the windows have been installed. An added benefit to working remotely on this project might be that less time needs to be spent out in the cold wintery conditions!