Exploiting the Elements of Passive Design
This home uses five systems to reduce its environmental impact, lower its operating cost, and improve its connection to the land.
Magazine extra: Listen to James explain the hallmarks of Pacific Northwest-style architecture and view additional photos of this project, as well as the work of two of his design heroes, Peter Bohlin and James Cutler.
Every site has a story to tell, and the right house can help to tell that story. Located on the western coast of Bowen Island in British Columbia, this house is a good example. My clients, a professor of East Asian archaeology and a researcher from Kyoto, Japan, had worked the land for years, cultivating extensive gardens of ornamental plants from around the world. When they approached me to design a house for the property, they had only two requests: The home must fit the site, and it should have minimal impact on the landscape. The rest of the design was left in my hands. As a graduate of the University of Oregon, I have…