El "L" (2970 sq. ft.)


1. "L" shape two story featuring south facing protected courtyard.

2. Three, four or five bedrooms (two or three up, one or two down.)

3. Three baths (master down, full up, with 1/2 down).

4. Separate viewing room down (semi circle), can be an addition

5. Three open patios up (two out bedrooms, one central)

6. Central kitchen/dining area with kitchen island. 7. Attached garage (as shown) or extra semicircular room.

I was thinking about a two story "L" shaped plan, when I got an e-mail from Butch with a set of requirements that seemed to fit. So I started to seriously develop this plan, and I think it will work well for many families who can afford to build it.

In general, when designing a larger home, two stories make a lot of sense. In the case of the modified "L", it works out particularly well. The stairs up give access to a short south facing hallway with access to the two bedrooms on each end of the "L", the shared bath, the large "studio" (or forth bedroom), and the walk out balcony over the courtyard...all very clean, efficient with lots of light. As suggested by Butch, space allows walk out balconies from each bedroom. Great to capture the views, or for Butch, a place to put the hot tub.

The "L" shape encloses a large protected courtyard, facing south to gather the low winter sun, and give protection from winter winds. Large terrace doors give access to the garden courtyard from the living area, the central kitchen/dining/entry, and the master bedroom. This courtyard will often be very pleasant even in the coldest winters. The garage on the west side protects from cold winds out of the north/west in the winter, and the hot afternoon sun in the summer. The garage and the semicircular viewing room can be build initially or as additions.

The version shown here with an 18 foot end wall is designed about as small as possible for this concept. The plan is based on a three to one module..three equal cubes on each side of the "L" with the inner and outer points cut to create the entry and kitchen. The plan can be increased in size for more room in all use areas (and a slightly different configuration) by increasing the end wall dimension by two foot increments. Also note, that the plan can be revesed to put the garage on the east side if required by the lot layout. This plan is a preliminary, and will be improved with detailing.