Garcia Street Residence
Santa Fe, New Mexico
This project began as a challenging urban infill design. The site is triangular in shape, located on a busy street in the heart of the Historic District of Santa Fe. An existing concrete block structure which had been condemned was demolished to make way for the new residence.
Most of the existing homes in the neighborhood are surrounded by high adobe walls. Therefore we felt that enclosing the property with 6’ adobe walls not only afforded privacy but also fit into the existing fabric of the neighborhood. Additional benefits of the yard walls would be the reduction of dust from the dirt road, elimination of traffic noise from the street.
However, we needed the support of the neighborhood to establish walls of this height. We worked closely with the neighbors and informed them of our intentions to use adobe walls to enclose the site. They were thrilled and even wrote letters of support to the Historic Design Review Board on our behalf – after all, the high walls also gave them privacy from their “new neighbor”.
While the owners wanted to have a more contemporary home on the exterior, the Historic Design Review Board would not allow this. We therefore gave a “nod” to contemporary design with a Territorial Style home which has clean, crisp corners on both the exterior and interior, large windows to flood the house with light as well as clean, smooth, hand troweled walls on the interior. The interior was designed with long, layered views through multiple spaces and high ceilings with exposed structural beams. The result is a Territorial Style home of three bedrooms and two baths that even the neighbors say they appreciate because it feels as if it has always been there.
2007 AIA AWARD