The two-story home was designed by Lisa and Nathan Kalaher (us), both Architects for themselves and their two young sons.

In terms of site, we desired a home that allowed us to both connect with and separate from the prairie covered site along the Missouri River. In terms of dwelling, we were looking for a home that is simultaneously open and welcoming to guests while maintaining privacy for the family.

We used these somewhat opposing desires for the home to develop a design parti.

Family vs. Guests
The home concept was developed with three types of spaces in mind: Family Space, Guest Space and Shared Space. Family bedrooms and a private deck are located at the upper level; while the guest bedroom, guest living space and guest patio are located at the lower level. Spaces used by both family and guests include the kitchen, great room and a shared patio located on the main level. The great room is a two-story space which connects the upper and lower level living spaces.

Beyond locating spaces by floor level, form and materiality were used to delineate the family, guest and shared spaces. The shared exterior patios are found adjacent to the black-cedar sheathed two story volume, while the family exterior deck is located above the concrete storm shelter, and the guest patio is located in a nook defined by a concrete form wrapping the black-cedar form at the main level.

Transparent vs Opaque (Glass vs. No Glass).

In an interesting dichotomy, at dusk the viewing rooms become the viewed rooms. As the home stands exposed to the street, the river and neighbors, we developed a strategy determining which areas have large expanses of windows, which have smaller windows and which have none. There is direct correlation between how public or private a space is in the home and how transparent or opaque the exterior skin is.

Natural vs Manicured
The site vegetation consists of short-cut manicured lawn surrounded by a tall natural prairie. This configuration allows for a constant connection to the natural environment while still supporting more structured play and lawn activities for the family. Even the skin of the home itself uses a contrast of highly machined materials such as glazing systems against less-machined materials such as knotty-cedar. The cedar siding is used at the interior in many locations with views to the exterior in order to strengthen the connection between the exterior and interior.

The result of these strategies is a home that serves to simultaneously connect to and escape from its context as desired by the family.

Quick Facts
Architect: PLaN Architecture

The home has 4 bedrooms (2 kids bedrooms, a master upstairs and one guest suite downstairs).

The home has approximately 4,000 square feet. Completed in 2017.

The exterior (and sometimes interior) materials include black cedar siding, cast concrete and aluminum framed glazing.

The interior public guest spaces have wood flooring. The private family spaces have carpet flooring. Black cedar siding and white sheetrock are used throughout the interior for the walls.

The kitchen cabinetry is Poggenpohl with white quartz tops.

Much of the artwork throughout the house is about the site such as the collage illustrating 1092 (the one-hundred year flood plain elevation at the site) or the painting showing the numbers 530 (the address of the house).

Nathan Kalaher uploaded 530 house through Add A Home.
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Nighttime view looking south from the street. (2017)

View from the river side looking north with a thematic site plan to the right. (2017)

View showing the dining area from the living room. The whiskey display is also visible next to the dining table. (2017)

View showing the entry hall wall screening view to the kitchen from the street. The 530 painting also serves as the address sign for the home. (2017)

View of the kitchen. (2017)

View to the kitchen island overlooking the Missouri River. (2017)

View of the dining and living room areas from the kitchen island. (2017)

View to the Missouri River from the master bedroom. The formerly-exterior, cedar sheathed wall is shown at the left. (2017)

View to the north looking at the reading room on the left and the formerly-exterior cedar sheathed wall at the right. (2017)

View to the reading room. (2017)

View showing the guest bathroom with formerly-exterior cedar-sheathed walls. (2017)

View showing a rain chain downspout at the north. The entire roof utilizes rain chains. The window beyond. (2017)

Daytime view of the reading room from the exterior. (2017)

Nighttime view of the south facade (river side) from the prairie. (2017)

Logan exploring the rain-chain. (2017)

Boys playing. (2017)

Lisa and the boys playing Ring Around the Rosie. (2016, before the guest suite addition)

The boys eating modern. (2016)

The family room (Oliver and Logans loft, 2017)

View showing the guest bedroom with the formerly-exterior cedar-sheathed wall in the background. (2017)


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  • PLaN Architecture