Project DescriptionSite The southernmost property on the Hawk, a point at the far tip of Cape Sable Island in Nova Scotia, Canada.
Program A 1,200-square-foot single-family residence in a bird sanctuary, which had to be designed to tread lightly on the land.
Solution This single-family house has two distinct formal and spatial components. A 70-foot-long horizontal bar stands 8 feet tall and sits astride raised piers, which were put in place to minimize the footprint on the sensitive site. This bar is anchored at one end by a 24-foot-tall, 10-foot-wide tower that provides the house’s vertical element. Westmount, Quebec–based architect Andrew King’s goal of focusing these two architectural lenses on the region’s archetypal landscape of ocean, ground, sky, and horizon impressed the jurors. “This is a well-conceived, well-articulated idea,” juror Brad Lynch said. “In terms of the relationship to the topography of the site and the simplicity of it and the juxtaposition of it, somebody knows what he’s doing.”
The timber structure is clad in concrete panels and aluminum grating. A grated-aluminum deck extending from the house toward the horizon is bisected by vertical sheets of glass framed by 2x8 studs. These transparent layers are aligned to create a slotted view to the sea. The jurors admired the embrace of industrial materials and the radical pragmatism of its undefined, multipurpose interior spaces. Juror Joseph Rosa saw its simple typology as an escape from everyday cluttered existence. “It harkens back to the classic houses by [Marcel] Breuer and [Walter] Gropius,” he said. “You just turn the key and go in.”