Live/Work Accessory Dwelling Unit
This homeowner downsized to 673 sq. ft. But don't be mistaken—material choices and layout make this ADU feel large.
This client, a Pilates instructor, envisioned her ADU on a Minneapolis city lot as a live/work space that embraced lagom—Swedish for “not too little, not too much.” She wanted to live and work in a smaller footprint than the 3000-sq.-ft. main house, which she rented out after moving into the 673-sq.-ft. ADU.
A ground-level studio/garage, encompassing an additional 624 sq. ft., serves mainly as a Pilates studio, but also has full functionality as a garage. The design of the second-level apartment separates private areas from open living spaces—the bathroom, storage room, and bedroom are on one side of the apartment; and the kitchen, living room, and deck are on the other. Large sliding doors that open up to the deck and yard provide an open flow from the kitchen all the way across the apartment.
Materials were carefully selected for their natural simplicity. Concrete floors with in-floor heat serve both the studio and garage. In-floor heat is also included below white oak wood floors in the living spaces above. The windows surrounding the main living space provide ample light and sky views while also making the space feel larger than it is. White oak cabinets with natural soapstone countertops bring Scandinavian warmth to the space, which succeeds as the very definition of lagom.