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Sliding House, Upper Kingsburg

MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects

Shared By

mkrochmal, Hanley

Project Name

Sliding House, Upper Kingsburg

Project Status


Year Completed



1,700 sq. feet


  • Brian MacKay-Lyons, MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects, Halifax, Nova Scotia
  • General Contractor: Gary Kilgour, G.R. Kilgour Construction, Chester, Nova Scotia
  • Structural Engineer: Michael Comeau, Campbell Comeau Engineering, Halifax
  • Greg Richardson

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Project Description

Custom / 3,000 Square Feet or Less / Merit
With its nearly irreducible geometry and minimal palette of materials—a corrugated metal exterior with a poplar “liner”—Sliding House embodies a simplicity that, in the words of architect Brian MacKay-Lyons, Hon. FAIA, “approaches the idea of zero.” The jury found both the formula and the result compelling. “It has an incredibly effective parti,” said one panel member, who called MacKay-Lyons’s approach “a study in reduction.”

The main-level floor plan consists of a linear living-and-dining room bracketed by covered porches. A kitchen, fireplace recess, powder room, and twin stairways (up to a sleeping loft and down to a lower-level bedroom) fill the thickened north wall. At the south wall, a band of windows takes in a broad sweep of Atlantic horizon. A move the judges termed “that little tweak”—end walls that are square to the roof’s slope rather than plumb—“makes the building dynamic, but still keeps it very simple and direct.” —Bruce D. Snider
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