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Project: Keller Farmhouse
Location: Western Washington, east of Seattle
Architect: Living Shelter Design
Owner: Keller family
Square Footage: 1,392 main, 941 upper, 2,333 total
Budget: $230,000 for home, $33,000 for garage w/ unfinished apartment
Builder: Gordon Construction, Fall City, Washington
Photographer: Mike Zarieki
· Flood plain design
· Vernacular design response
· Efficient space utilization
· Extended outdoor living
· Passive Solar
· Masonry heater
· Heat Recovery Ventilator
· Hard surface floors
· Detached garage
· Durable materials
The Kellers had lived in an old, deteriorating farmhouse for thirteen years on the site of their new home. This gave them plenty of time for dreaming up an ideal home. It also gave them intimate knowledge of the site, so that when the time came to make the dream a reality, they knew exactly how to capture the best the site had to offer.
The Keller family is a nuclear one-mom, dad, and four kids from ages three to twelve. Two boys share a bedroom; the others have their own. All but the youngest help on the farm. As a family of farmers who are used to working with the rhythms of nature, the home they dreamed of was to do the same. Their vision included an energy-efficient classic farmhouse with good sunlight, hardwood floors, and a masonry heater. They wanted a home small enough to be affordable to build, operate, and maintain.
Selecting an architect began by paging through the local Yellow Pages. During the interview process it was easy for them to sense early on who they would get along with. They needed an architect to not only design their dream house but also one who would fit a floodplain condition at the site of the home.
"Terry was practical from the start," the Kellers said. "She said that she wouldn't begin the design process until the floodplain issue was resolved. That impressed us."