Casa Abierta, designed by Kube Architecture.
Paul Burke Casa Abierta, designed by Kube Architecture.

Kube Architecture 

A family living in Chevy Chase, Md., found its suburban tract home to be too tight and closed off, prompting a meeting with Washington, D.C.–based Kube Architecture. What the clients sought was more openness and a greater connection to the outdoors. Taking advantage of a large backyard, the architects added two wings to the existing home—a new master suite, and an extended kitchen and dining area—changing the overall plan into a U shape surrounding a newly formed courtyard. Inside, the removal of partition walls transformed the small existing rooms into a 2,230-square-foot open plan, and exterior walls were replaced with sliding glass doors. Uninterrupted ipe flooring forms a seamless transition from the central living area outside to the deck, which is shaded with vertical wooden slats. “This project took what was a pretty flat and typical backyard and made it into something just extraordinary,” said juror Josh Shelton. “It's just full of energy and full of pop.” 

Click here to see all of the winners of the 2014 Residential Architect Design Awards.

Renovated street facade.
Paul Burke Renovated street facade.
Renovated yard and added terrace.
Paul Burke Renovated yard and added terrace.
Existing house.
Courtesy Kube Architecture Existing house.
Paul Burke Terrace.
Living area.
Paul Burke Living area.
View into kitchen.
Paul Burke View into kitchen.
Living area.
Paul Burke Living area.


Floor Plan.
Courtesy Kube Architecture Floor Plan.

Project Credits

Project  Casa Abierta, Chevy Chase, Md.
Architect  Kube Architecture, Washington, D.C.—Janet Bloomberg, AIA (partner); Rich Loosle-Ortega (principal)  
General Contractor  Housecraft—Stas Wronka
Structural Engineer  Keast & Hood
Steel Fabricator  Metal Specialties
Photography  Paul Burke
Project Size  2,230 square feet
Construction Cost  Withheld

Materials and Sources

Bathroom Cabinets  Ikea
Bathroom Fittings and Fixtures  Hansgrohe
Countertops  Caesarstone
Doors  Western Window Systems
Exterior Siding  James Hardie (HardiePanel); Viroc
Flooring  Davida's Kitchen & Tiles; Atlas Hardwood Floors (maple and Brazilian mahogany)
Hardware  Omnia Industries
HVAC  Carrier
Kitchen Cabinets  Ikea
Kitchen Fittings and Fixtures  Hansgrohe
Paints and Finishes  Sherwin-Williams Co.
Roofing  Single-ply membrane
Windows  Western Window Systems