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High tech, wide open, energy efficient ... and still very Southwestern.

Regional traditions mix with high-tech style in the remodel of this Albuquerque house. To enlarge the nondescript flat roofed box-set amid the lushness of the Rio Grande Valley-architects Jonathan and Carolyn Robbins Siegel are carrying out a two-phase plan.

Phase one is a large new living area that provides the sense of welcoming shelter found in traditional New Mexican architecture, as well as open views of the surrounding beauty. (Phase two will add a master bedroom suite at the rear of the house.) The adobe-block addition extends from a front corner of the north-facing house. A new entry-with closet and guest bath-leads into a hall that links the dining room (former living room) and the new living room.

Keeping energy efficiency and economics in mind, the Siegels called on passive solar principles. To prevent heat loss on the northern exposure, they enclosed the living room with a solid curve of wall; a sickle-shaped skylight washes the wall with natural light.

Glass walls open the room to the south. Outside, an angled steel beam boldly trims an overhang that admits low-angled winter sun for heat gain but shades out higher summer sun. Supporting the ceiling and the exterior overhang is a system of 16-inch-deep open-web steel joists. These extend through the window wall and are welded to the beam of the overhang. Used where tradition would dictate a heavier-looking system of vigas and latillas, the almost-lacy joists support a ceiling of tongue-and-groove pine 1-by-6s.

Panels at the bottom and near the top of glass walls open for ventilation. Where joists penetrate the wall, the Siegels cut plastic (Lexan) panels to fit around the steel and sealed the joints with silicone. They poured a concrete floor for the living room, which steps down in one corner to provide what will be furnished as an intimate seating area. A waxed finish gives the floor mellow gray tones that complement the pale pink-beige of walls finished with natural untinted plaster.

Tying new construction to old, the Siegels built parapets that step up from the original roof to meet the addition. They refinished their entire house with khaki stucco. This first phase added 975 square feet at $60 a square foot. El
COPYRIGHT 1991 Sunset Publishing Corp.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:house remodeling
Publication:Sunset
Date:Jul 1, 1991
Words:367
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