Launch Slideshow

zachary house

Simplicity doesn't guarantee elegance, but in the case of this project that's exactly what it achieves.

zachary house

Simplicity doesn't guarantee elegance, but in the case of this project that's exactly what it achieves.

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    Timothy Hursley

    Large doors open this dogtrot to cross-ventilation,while corrugated fiberglass windows allow daylight to penetrate. “The chimney serves as a threshold to thehouse and provides an asymmetrical counterpoint,”says Atkinson.

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    Timothy Hursley

studio atkinson, washington, d.c.

Simplicity doesn't guarantee elegance, but in the case of this project that's exactly what it achieves. "This is a very good small house," the judges said. "The architect accomplished a lot with few parts."

Consisting of two rooms separated by an exte-rior breezeway for natural ventilation, the house is a loose interpretation of a dogtrot layout. Then again, says architect Stephen Atkinson, perhaps it's "more akin to a shotgun." The plan locates public rooms--the kitchen, dining, and living areas--in one wing and private ones--the bathroom and sleeping area--in another. Four sets of doors open the house to cross-ventilation.

Artful restraint prevails. A weekend retreat for the architect's parents, the house is only as big as it needed to be, and the vernacular dictated modest materials like corrugated metal, pressure-treated lumber, and translucent fiberglass panels. "It is unique by its absence of anything unnecessary," the judges said. "It got to the bare essence."

project architect: Stephen Atkinson, Studio Atkinson
general contractor: John Atkinson, Baton Rouge, La.
project size: 550 square feet
site size: 44 acres
construction cost: $90 per square foot
photographer: Timothy Hursley