The project is a single family house for a surgeon and a scientist with three young children. The clients' express desire for a house that embodied simplicity, material warmth, and above all, a rational and authentic composition was the origin of the design concept. The site is on the Red River near downtown Winnipeg in an established neighbourhood. While it is highly desirable to live on the river, the river's banks are prone to instability. Factors of safety keep the house a prudent distance from the water. By extruding the build-able area of the site to accomodate two floors, the form allows for the optimizing of views, natural light, and privacy. At the same time, the house strives to be a good neighbour that does not block anyone else's view or access to light.
The design resolves this family's domestic program in a striaght forward manner. "Public" rooms are grouped on the river side in an open and minimal space that maximizes views of the river. The centrally located stair straddles the two halves of the house and the house and the landing supports extensive bookshelves for this learned family. the shelves are designed to be accessed from either landing or floor, preventing the need for a ladder. "Private" spaces are located on the second floor. The parents' bedroom, screen room and terrace overlook the river, while the three children's bedrooms overlook the street.