Project Size: 2,320 square feet
- Glass: Trulite
- Skylights: Velux
- Wood doors: Douglas fir Veneer
- Sliding doors:’Lift and Slides’ by Radiant City Millwork
Program: A Toronto family of five wanted to replace their 800-square-foot, poorly insulated, tin-roof cabin dating to the 1950s with a four-season house to accommodate extended family and guests. The clients requested a modern design—with clean lines and plenty of natural light—that also captured the rugged character of the site.
Location: The double-lot property—located on Clear Lake in Seguin Township, Ontario—has dense woods to the west and faces a lake to the east. Built on a sheet of exposed bedrock in the woods, the house sits on the same plot as the original structure to minimize the disturbance to the trees on the property.
Solution: Inspired by the idea of a tent on a campsite, the architects covered the steel- and wood-frame structure with a pitched roof. The north and east facades are lined with oversized, operable windows and screens for cross ventilation, while the south and west facades are mostly opaque—clad in black corrugated metal—to screen the harsh afternoon sun.
Visitors enter the house from the north, where the dock and more public activities are located. The interior is organized into three distinct units— communal living spaces, bedrooms, and master suite—which unfold from north to south. (Bedrooms point west toward the woods, while living areas and the master suite face east toward the lake.) Above the mud room, a small loft is used as an extra bedroom.
Construction methods: Reduced cement content concrete foundation walls and slab-on-grade polished concrete floors create thermal mass heat sinks for energy conservation. Energy consumption is further reduced through a heat recovery unit, high-efficiency boiler, and wood stove.
Maclennan Jaunkalns Miller Architects
202-19 Duncan Street
Toronto, Ontario M5H 3H1
t. 416 593 6796
f. 416 593 0212