Photo © Brad Feinknopf

Waccabuc House

Chan-li Lin and Denise Ferris

Waccabuc, New York

Husband and wife Chan-li Lin and Denise Ferris design a modern house with a dramatic structure in Waccabuc, New York.

By Laura Raskin

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Based in New York City, Chan-li Lin has worked for Rafael Viñoly Architects for 22 years, focusing on large projects. About three years ago he and his wife, Denise Ferris, an architect and project manager, decided to design on a smaller scale–a weekend house.

A teardown on a small hill 50 miles north of the city in Waccabuc, New York, hit the mark. When Lin saw the view into the woods from the roof of the existing house, he decided that living spaces should be at that level, where abundant trees would provide privacy. The couple razed the old structure but saved the foundation for the new 2,170-square-foot house. The second floor, a rectangular volume, cantilevers dramatically 20 feet from each end of the house. These cantilevers, supported by two steel trusses integrated within a two-by-six wood frame, extend from a pedestal-like base to shelter a carport at the east and a porch at the west. “I was keen on developing something whose characteristics were determined by a structure,” says Lin.

Enclosed by cedar walls that are stained black, with shiplap joints, the second floor contains the kitchen, living spaces, and a bedroom. Two more bedrooms are located on the ground floor, the front of which is red cedar stained with a natural finish. While the couple originally intended to sell the house, they've been getting too much pleasure from it to let it go. “We were either going to enjoy doing it or kill each other,” jokes Lin about working on the house with Ferris, “but we truly enjoyed it. Our strengths are compatible.”

Completion Date: July 2011

Gross Square Footage: 2,170 square feet

Architect and Designer:
Chan-li Lin, Denise Ferris
P.O.Box 103, Waccabuc, NY 10597

December 2012
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