When designing a residence, the driveway can sometimes be an afterthought. Does it lead you to the house and provide enough room for parking? Great, done. But beyond the basic practical needs they serve, they also provide opportunities to integrate new technology, support stormwater infiltration, and create a beautiful first impression of a home.
Location: Oxnard, California
Two University of California professors hired local architect Daniel Garness to design a beach getaway that would provide ample space for themselves and their children and grandchildren. The main floor dining area opens up to both the interior courtyard and the driveway, which mimics the facade with linear detailing.
Location: Austin, Texas
Architect Michael Hsu designed this home for a motorcycle racer who wanted to take better advantage of the stunning views offered by the property. The former residence was demolished and replaced with a more modern home, including a sleek driveway made with concrete pads and a sliding gate that offers ample parking space.
Location: Portland, Oregon
The Z-Haus, designed and developed by architect Ben Waechter and his wife, realtor Daria Crymes, is a two-unit, six-story infill home in Northeast Portland that incorporates many sustainable building techniques. The double driveway is constructed out of concrete pavers and squares of Corsican mint, letting rainwater percolate into the ground. One would expect nothing less from a new home in a city that has become synonymous with green living.
Location: Long Island, New York
When the Manhattanite owners originally bought this Long Island property, the existing small cottage didn't suit the needs of their growing family. The couple enlisted Resolution 4: Architecture to design a brand new home that would offer them a refuge from the city. The driveway brings visitors into the breezeway between the two main wings of the home.
Location: Jackson, Wyoming
Abramson Teiger Architects designed this home to blend seamlessly into the hillside and take full advantage of the view of the Grand Teton mountain range. The dramatic, dark driveway follows the natural grade of the slope and leads to the back of the cantilevered home, avoiding any intrusion on the lush landscape views from the front.
Location: Skiathos, Greece
This family vacation home was designed for a set of brothers by K-Studio, an Athens-based architectural firm helmed by another set of brothers. The family affair resulted in the stunning two-story Plane House. The driveway, much like the rest of the home, incorporates elements of the local landscape through a central tree and slate that was sourced from a nearby quarry.
Location: Seattle, Washington
This minimal and permeable driveway leads to David and Jodi Sarti's little red home, hidden behind two other residential properties in Seattle's Central District. Sarti designed and built the residence himself, on a limited budget and a restricted 40-by-50-foot lot.
At the Santa Monica home of architect Jess Bornstein and his family, each window was planned to frame interesting vistas or to find the best sight lines around adjoining buildings. To help divide up a shared driveway on the hillside location, they created a "spite fence."