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Adding on; how to expand a house laterally - the third of our remodel strategies.

How to expand a house laterally-the third of our remodel strategies

Adding laterally may be the best way to expand your house when you have a big enough lot. But tacking on an extra room won't necessarily make your house more comfortable. The best horizontal additions also improve the function and comfort of adjacent spaces. In this final installment in our three-part series on remodeling strategies, we illustrate a variety of ways to add more than just square footage.

As you think through your addition, catalog your needs, desires, options, and constraints. How will the the new space be used? Will its function be compatible with the function of adjacent spaces? Where can you most logically and feasibly attach it at the front, the side, or the rear? Can you extend or expand a circulation pattern (for instance, by linking a new bedroom with an existing hallway or reworking existing spaces to create an efficient, comfortable connection)?

What are the structural considerations? Is a bearing wall obstructing a potential connection? You may be able to open it up by replacing it with load-bearing beams or columns. If you're adding plumbing, can you install water lines near existing pipes to save money? Can you take advantage of outdoor space?

Do you want the addition to look as though it's part of the original house, do you prefer a sense of contrast, or would you rather have it feel like a separate structure entirely? Think about materials, proportions, light, and form-and how such elements can help the extension blend in or stand out.

Are there setback requirements, height limits, building code restrictions, or design-review provisions to consider? Check with your community's building department before submitting final plans. Some departments provide printed guidelines explaining the permit process.

Call this rear extension a splice-on instead of an add-on. The two-bedroom, Ushaped addition across the rear of Susan and Michael Cohen's 1,100-square-foot Spanish-style bungalow in Los Angeles makes a seamless transition between existing and new portions. In blurring the boundary, the 350-square-foot addition works beautifully with adjacent spaces reconfigured from the original two bedrooms and a small study.

To ensure a smooth connection, architects Barbara and David Kaplan of Santa Monica, California, converted these spaces at the same time they added on the

new ones behind them.

The old master bedroom made way for a dressing area, new master bath, and hallway leading to the new master bedroom. The children's old room became a pantry and laundry, a bookcase-lined hallway leading to the children's new bedroom, and a closet.

Both new bedrooms face each other across a small pergola off the original study, which now functions as the family room opening directly onto the children's hallway. A raised concrete terrace for barbecuing and entertaining extends 15 feet farther into the garden.

New entry and open-to-the-sky shelter

"Less than meets the eye" describes the imaginative addition to the side of this slender bungalow. Part of a two-phase remodel, tbe 10 1/2-foot-wide addition looks like a room with a glass-block window facing the street. But where you'd expect a ceiling, there's only sky. The front and side walls enclose a 29-foot-long patio outside the living-dining room. The walls provide privacy from neighbors, winds, and the noise of passing cars.

The 5- by 8-foot panel of glass blocks breaks up the expanse of wall-which rises 15 feet (to match the height of the other phase of the remodel, on the other side of the new entry). The "window" brightens the patio and glows invitingly at night. So the side wall seems less massive, it steps down from the facade height.

At the other end of the patio, two stuccocovered columns support a beam with an arching cutout that mirrors an arch above the new entry. Two broad steps drop to the driveway, which widens before a twocar garage at the rear of the property.

A redefined entry

Although it pushed out only 8 feet closer to the street, the 15 1/2-foot-wide entry makes an important contribution to the house's exterior appearance and interior flow, It not only gives a more formal streetside look but also provides overhead and side shelter for arriving guests. At night, illumination behind the arching cutout gives the recessed door dramatic but indirect light.

Inside, the addition provides a transition zone so guests don't arrive smack in the middle of the living room. Coat closets flank the double doors that open on the 5 1/2-foot-deep tiled entry.

Architects Michael Kinoshita of Mountain View, California, and John Ludlow of San Jose collaborated on the project.

The pavillon idea: master bedroomis almost a separate building

Bringing down a wall or two is almost always a necessary step in connecting the old and the new in a remodel, The master bedroom suite shown here went about as far as possible to minimize the mess and intrusion of remodeling, It's almost a separate building, standing 68 inches from the rest of tbe house and connected to it only by an isthmus-like vestibule.

Designed by architect Victor H. Lee, the 33- by 35-foot structure packs in a bedroom, twin home offices, a reading area with a fireplace, his and her closets, and a dressing area with vanity. It also contains a separate room for toilet, shower, and tub; windows let in light and provide views of the back garden and a ribbon of bamboo and river rock that runs between house and addition.

The 9 1/2-foot-wide connecting vestibule has a glass roof that brightens the passage and helps bring light into a corner of the living room. The master suite is two steps up from the main house, which was built

on a concrete-slab foundation.

A 14-foot-wide barrel vault with copper roofing arcs over the entry between the addition and an entertaining patio. Inside, the arc intersects the angled ceilings that follow the roof line. A grid of bleached glue-laminated beams spans the room and ties to posts in exterior walls.

The addition's post-and-beam construction allowed the patio-facing (west) side to be mostly glass. Reinforcement against lateral movement comes ftom crisscrossing metal tie rods in front of the 6 1/2-footsquare windows at the wing's patio-facing corners, plywood panels in other walls.

Fireplace, office areas, and bed spread out in the 21-foot-deep section of the room just inside the patio entry; bathrooms and closets fit into the 14 feet behind that. A shed- roofed greenhouse window brightens the shower room, which looks out onto its own walled garden,

Lee designed the addition for owners Cynthia Jackson and Ray Wheeler.

Two triangular bays and just 6 square feet make all the difference

A little twist-the result of two very small additions and some modest modifications made a big difference in this splitlevel ranch-style house in Phoenix.

Both the living and family rooms focus on a two-way fireplace, but the traffic flow through the rooms made it all but impossible to arrange furniture. Foot traffic from the entry to the kitchen and dining area ran right through both obvious seating areas (see upper drawing).

Architect William P. Bruder created a better entry and improved traffic flow and seating by popping out little triangular bays off the living room at the front and dining room at the rear of the house. These small additions (only 3 square feet each) enabled him to rotate the axis of the

living, family, and dining rooms by 45[deg].

Each bay is only about 30 inches deep; because the bays tuck under the eaves, they required no changes in the roof line. Two triangular slabs were poured, short walls were built on them, and glass planes were added with silicon-caulked butt joints to create unobstructed openings. For both bays, existing window headers bridge the openings.

The floor plans at right show how the additions changed the traffic pattern through the entire public area. Although traffic still flows past both sides of the fireplace, new seating-lined angled walls (which actually subtract floor space) give the rooms a more intimate concentration on the fireplace.

They turned an "L' into a more useful "U"

A standard '50s floor plan couldn't comfortably accommodate the growth of two children or the requirements of a career change that demanded work and office space at home. But interior designer Margaret Lindeman Baldwin and her husband, Keith, liked their property, their neighbors, and the nearby schools.

After many rounds of discussion, with various tissue overlays set over the existing plan, the Baldwins decided on a 600square-foot addition containing an entry hall, a new and larger living room, and an office. From the exterior, the addition balances the existing garage, respecting' the essential style of the house and its landscaping.

The rain-sheltered new entry has an exposed-aggregate floor that continues through the front ball. The living room, dominated by a handsome fireplace with raised hearth and open stacks, gains light from skylights in its vaulted ceiling. Behind the fireplace is tucked Mrs, Baldwin's office. It holds a drafting table-desk and a seating niche for client consultations, Stock bookshelf units bolted to the wall provide storage, as do shelves behind louvered doors.

Two-story sunroom links house with garden

The best thing you could say about the original rear elevation of this hillside Portland house is that it faced south. It had little esthetic appeal and it had limited access to the back garden and a pool (you had to go outside and down a steep set of stairs).

This two-story addition joins the two levels, provides a ground-level exit, expands the master bedroom, and houses a spa. Architect Gerry Brewster designed tbe addition with builder Dick Hallberg and owners Cathie and Kirk McNeil.

Attached to the old house just under the eaves, the addition extends 14 feet from the original back wall. A single layer of tempered glass makes the first 8 feet a house-wide sunroom. Framing that extends 4 feet beyond the glazing supports 'Thompson Seedless' grapevines, which offer shade and fruit in summer.

The upstairs dining room and expanded master bedroom open to a glassed-in cedar deck that serves as a sunny breakfast spot and play area. An open stairwell at one end and a central cutout bring light down into the basement-turned-family room and raised spa.

Streamlined kitchen makes the most of the view

There's nothing distracting in this kitchen; sleek materials cover floors, counters, and cabinetry. The simplicity is calculated, for just outside tbe generous grids of glass is the real attraction: a continually changing panorama of Playa del Rey, California.

Moldings have been eliminated, and seating is built in. Lighting is limited to a single pendant over the dinette, discreet downlights in the vaulted ceiling, and subtle accent lighting wrapping the counters. The room is precise but not austere. Besides the comfortable dinette, which invites retaxing, a subtle ribbon of light wraps around the kitchen in the evenings. This backsplash lighting detail uses flexible clear tubing, available at many lighting stores, that is recessed behind and below each counter surface. Extremely low-wattage bulbs (which theoretically never need replacing) are evenly spaced within the tubing. Sandblasted glass pieces, mounted with clear silicone adhesive, sit atop this light tube.

Architect: Michael Pearce, Studio City, for Judy Seger and Roy Bagdasarian.
COPYRIGHT 1989 Sunset Publishing Corp.
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Copyright 1989 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Date:Jun 1, 1989
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