House on the San Miguel River 1992

San Miguel County, CO

This house is located on a narrow site in the San Miguel River Canyon adjacent to the highway. It reflects the local traditions of simple buildings and roof forms with a long rectangular plan oriented to take advantage of sun and river views.

Facing the highway, a concrete wall surrounds service spaces that buffer the living areas from traffic sounds. The wall provides a backdrop for an existing stand of mature cottonwood trees, characteristic of the canyon.

The exterior wall facing the river is punctuated with a series of glazed openings that invite the outdoors in – including the sound of the river. Interior finishes were selected to provide a light but neutral backdrop for the landscape. Cantilevered decks extend out over the riverbank.
Living areas are organized around a three-story central space that receives daylight from above, and is crossed by stairs and bridges at the upper levels.

Minimal landscape improvements allow the natural character of the site to dominate. The simple geometry and structural order of the building contrast the rich vitality of its setting.

Completed: 1992
General Contractor: Kent Building Company
Structural Engineering: KRM Consultants Inc.
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