Project Description2012 RADA
Custom / 3,000 Square Feet or Less / Merit
Architect Julie Snow, FAIA, and her clients conceived the concrete-enclosed ground level of this Minneapolis house after a visit to Donald Judd’s boxy sculptures in Marfa, Texas. Judd’s work inspired the walls that extend past the building envelope to surround a landscaped garden, providing privacy on a tight lot. “The project works with the scale of the neighborhood and the close proximity of the neighbors,” a judge said.
It’s not easy to achieve a sense of lightness in a concrete house, but Snow managed to do so by using wood and plaster for the upper level and by opening up the garden-facing wall with glass doors. This latter strategy basically doubles the first floor’s living space. The owners can even enjoy their garden during Minneapolis’ frigid winters, thanks to an outdoor firepit. “The house is an urban sanctuary,” Snow says.