A unique approach to a beautiful – but challenging – site, Bridge House is the innovative collaboration between Dan Brunn Architecture and Dwell that has been steadily taking shape in Los Angeles’ Hancock Park. The 210-foot-long, single-level home crosses directly over a stream which runs through the property. As the project comes to life, we’re continuing to track the progress on site as we excitedly watch the final stages of construction fall into place.
After the BONE Structure phase was complete, all of the openings were framed and ready for windows and doors. Shortly thereafter, the window package from Western Window Systems was delivered and installed on site. The windows and doors, facilitating the intimate connection with the environment, were critical to the design and experience of the home.
Several Western Window Systems products brought this vision to life. One of the standouts, created specifically for the project, was a Series 980 Double Pivot Door. The side-by-side configuration and sheer size of the panels make an immediate impact upon entry. Each door is 9 feet tall and 10 feet wide, for an overall width spanning a dramatic 20 feet. This impressive assembly didn’t exist before it was dreamed up by Dan Brunn and the DBA team. "I imagined the door as a ‘hug’ to embrace and bring people into the home," Brunn says.
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The ability to customize was one of the biggest draws of Western Window Systems for Brunn and team. Beyond the one-of-a-kind entry door, the home also features Series 900 Hinged Doors, Series 600 Multi-Slide Doors, and Series 670 Windows, all in custom sizes.
The freedom of size, placement, and function in window and door design was integral to the success of the project. All of the bedrooms include vertical window assemblies, both casement and fixed, which were carefully positioned to frame views. In the master bedroom, for example, an elongated vertical window assembly perfectly frames the trunk of a tree on the other side, creating a beautifully curated portal to the outdoors.
In addition to aesthetics, the quality and energy efficiency of Western Window Systems products were huge draws for Dan Brunn and team. The selected windows and doors boast dual-pane, low-E glass and thermally broken aluminum. In accordance with stringent California building codes, energy efficiency "is becoming a necessity, not an option anymore," Brunn explains.
A visual milestone in the home’s construction was the addition of the exterior Western Red Cedar cladding from Real Cedar. The warmth and texture of the wood brought the design to life, allowing the structure to complement the natural wooded surroundings in a seamless and organic way. Laid out in a vertically stacked pattern, the 14-foot cedar boards were sourced by the DBA team and span the home’s entire height, which eliminated the need for vertical joints.
Western Red Cedar is exceptionally environmentally friendly, removing greenhouse gasses from the air. It is also renewable, biodegradable, and sourced from sustainably managed forests. Beyond the inherent eco-friendly qualities, the DBA team selected knotty, "remnant" wood, instead of clear cedar, minimizing waste.
The DBA team closely collaborated with Real Cedar to create the custom finish seen on the exterior of Bridge House. A water-based penetrative stain was used to create a light, "beached-effect" look with the wood. The result is a muted and modern natural tone which will gradually become more grey over time, requiring no maintenance as it gracefully ages.
Stay tuned as on-site construction enters the homestretch, and the completed project is revealed!