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1940s Era Home Conversion: Boxhouse


This is Boxhouse, an award-winning modern home in Boulder, Colorado, designed and built by Rob Pyatt as a University of Colorado College of Architecture & Planning project (advised/sponsored by Rick Sommerfeld).  Boxhouse explores adaptive reuse and recycling of an existing 900 sf home built in 1948.  Tons of images below ...


The home was reclad with a plywood rainscreen system and juxtaposed with a box volume that houses a new kitchen, bed, and bath.  The entry in between is clad in polygal and acts as a solar chimney for passive cooling through the clerestory vents and also allows for natural daylighting. 

Throughout the renovation, Pyatt specified environmental materials as a means of greening the home.  Pyatt worked with Agriboard Industries to create a custom prefabricated compressed straw panel wall system and had the walls erected by crane in 4 hours. 

With much lower labor costs and a nice solid insulated wall, the new footprint was reconfigured for a family of four with a total of three bedrooms, two baths, and exterior courtyard to the rear of the house.

Speaking about the result, Rob Pyatt said, "I firmly believe that we can achieve sustainability in the built environment through adaptive reuse, recycling and construction efficiency, and in this way, we can improve the quality of life in our communities and provide affordable, healthy and inspired environments."


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Images via Michael de Leon Photography.


nice photos....nice house.

Similar to the TrailerWrap Project but with post-WW2 homes.

amazing! is there any way i could see some before pictures?

This was a nice series of visuals showing the good energy and craftsmanship your present project will be built from.

I can't wait to see the new rammed earth project on this web site. It will be an interesting juxtaposition to see the same corrugated aluminum structure in both designs.

Good luck when your family moves in and adds a new layer to the existing strata of memories!

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