In 1963, the story goes, a mechanical engineer for McDonnell Douglas visited friends in Newport Beach, California, and fell in love with their house—believed to have been designed by Gordon Drake, or at least in his style. Ambitiously, if not ignorantly, the engineer tried recreating the house from memory in his home city of Issaquah, Washington, drafting blueprints and undertaking construction with his brother. What he didn’t account for, though, were the obvious differences in weather conditions between dry and sunny Southern California and the rain-slogged Pacific Northwest.
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