Big Sky Journal
Located on 4.5 acres on the outskirts of Whitefish, Montana, this private residence has views of Big Mountain and Whitefish Range to the north, Swan Range and Saddleback Mountain to the east, and the unique feature of train tracks skirting the back of the property. This expansive scenery and the client’s desire for maximum energy performance drove the project design.
Utilizing simple, gabled forms and an agrarian aesthetic, the 3,000 sq. ft. home is highly functional, with open, spacious rooms that feature tall windows to capitalize on the sweeping views. In several places, the building envelope is carved away from the gable roof to frame these views or to add functionality to the interior spaces. Low-slope volumes connect the gabled forms, and windows continue to the underside of the roof eaves to marry a modern aesthetic with traditional influences.
Organized around a driveway courtyard, several access points into the home provide separation between the family living spaces, professional photo studio, and private music studio.
As sustainability was a priority, the home incorporates a wide array of features that support this goal. Among them are radiant, in-floor heating with heat-recovery ventilator, foundation walls with insulated concrete form, and exterior walls with rain-screen assembly, continuous exterior insulation, and blown-in cellulose cavity insulation, which provides a 50% improvement over code minimums. High performance, triple-pane, thermally broken, aluminum windows and doors were used throughout.