88th Avenue Residence

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This Project is intended as a prototype for any one of a series of similar underdeveloped lots along a length of 88th Avenue SE on Mercer Island that is just now undergoing redevelopment.  These lots topographies are characterized by a gentle slope down from the street to a fairly flat area in the front third of the property where the existing residential developments have typically been located.  These sites then generally slope more significantly to the rear toward a green belt extension of Luther Burbank Park.  Privacy issues due to the narrow 60 foot lot widths and the favored placement toward the front of the lot to avoid the issues of the steep slope to the rear have created a Row House like scenario with overgrown hedges along the street and until now have not been good candidates for redevelopment.

The design proposes a more sophisticated and contemporary redevelopment strategy that eschews the prevailing traditional developer mindset and caters to the urbane sensibilities of the technology based industries that proliferates the Seattle metropolitan area.  It intends to do so while still promoting the benefits of an idyllic island community.

The design of the 4,115 square foot residence presents itself as a two story structure facing the street with a lower level daylight basement forming a third level toward the rear to take advantage of the sloping site.  To facilitate privacy the Main Living Spaces and Master Bedroom have been elevated to the top floor.  An open plan that combines the Kitchen, Dining and Living Room is oriented to the front and a partially covered south facing Roof Top Terrace which is outfitted with a linear gas fireplace and built-in BBQ for outdoor entertainment.  The spacious Master Bedroom faces the Green Belt to the rear which includes its own private Deck and because of its elevated location has the feel of a tree house.

In addition to a two car Garage the Middle Level features an Entry with Mudroom and a covered Porch afforded by the overhang of the floor above.  This level also includes two Kids Bedrooms with a Jack-and-Jill Bath.  Each of these Bedrooms has access to a Deck that spans the rear elevation and focuses its attention to the Green Belt.

The Lower Level includes a Family/Play Room with a moveable partition that creates a separate Office/Den.  Each of these spaces opens directly to the rear yard which is accessed by folding window walls.  The internal Stairway from above wrap’s itself around a Bathroom which includes a generous Storage Area and Mechanical Closet.

Metal panels and cement board rain screen siding are used to clad the exterior.

All contents © 2012 George Daniel Wittman / architects, pllc