Sustainable Home in the Mountains of Colorado
Construction that emphasizes sustainability and livability while keeping to a tight budget is foundational to this mining-town community.
Creede America is a small community of modest-sized houses nestled in Colorado’s San Juan Mountains. In homage to the town of Creede’s mining history, the architecture nods to the regional vernacular while bringing a definite freshness and modernity to the homes, which range in size between 850 sq. ft. and 3000 sq. ft.
Construction that emphasizes sustainability and livability while keeping to a tight budget is foundational to the community. Windows afford natural cross ventilation, and since the cold winters require tightly insulated houses, there is a heat-recovery ventilator (HRV)—common to every Creede America residence—that moves fresh air through the house when doors and windows are closed.
Design-wise, each house has special elements that set it apart from the others. This project, a builder-owner design collaboration, uses plywood for the interior paneling, kitchen, ceiling, and window popout. Instead of full 4×8 sheets for the ceiling, a size that would have been off-scale for the house, the pieces were cut in quarters, and to accentuate the space between the sheets of plywood there is a consistent 1 ⁄ 4-in. gap. As proof that economy can be fun, bathroom vanities are stock IKEA cabinets, one custom-painted authentic taxi-cab yellow, the other bright red.
Architect/Builder: Avery Augur and Jaimi Baer, Caldera Design Build
Location: Creede, Colo.
Photography: Charles Davis Smith, FAIA
Learn more about the homes in this community at creedeamerica.com