Location: San Francisco
Program: LEED Platinum Certified Custom Home
Net pEUI: 30.83
Area: 1650sf + garage
Images: Joseph Schell, Eric Rorer
General Contractor: Creatively Built
Structural Engineer: Puns & Associates

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Urban LEED Platinum

This new custom home in San Francisco’s Castro/Upper Market neighborhood for a technology company executive fits snugly in a small 24′ x 75′ lot into its urban residential surroundings. Completed in 2014, the 25′ square plan contains 3 bedrooms and 2.5 baths in only 1650 sf of living space on three levels plus a two car garage and expansive roof deck with panoramic city views. A second completely remodeled guest cottage on the property completes the two unit composition.

The 5 level house respects the scale and qualities of its urban neighbors, while maintaining an unabashedly modern and minimalist plan and massing. The north (street) facade is composed of glass, wood composite panels and stucco, providing light and views. The south facade faces a shared yard with the cottage and is composed primarily of insulated polycarbonate panels, a perfect compromise of natural light and privacy. Interior materials are simply white gypsum board walls, dark hardwood floors, white lacquer cabinetry, and neutral limestone tile. A 400sf roof deck with outdoor fireplace and patch of natural planting crowns the structure.

Despite its north facing orientation, lack of exterior overhangs or other visual clues often associated with green homes, this house has been USGBC LEED Platinum certified. The orientation was dictated by the site and setbacks on the south side prevented overhangs in the small building envelope. Nevertheless, a number of measures were taken to achieve the Platinum rating target, including solid fiberglass doors and windows from Cascadia Windows, a translucent R7 insulated polycarbonate panel system from Galina, high-efficiency Eternal hybrid water heater for both radiant heat and domestic use, Energy Star appliances and many more strategies to reduce waste and maximize recycled content. DNM Architect performs all of its energy compliance calculations in-house during the design process to insure immediate feedback and better decisions for both architectural design and energy savings.