- Sheltering Roof
- Car Connection
- Entrance Transition
- Indoor Sunlight
- The Flow Through Rooms
- Dormer Windows
A roof is the iconic symbol for shelter- as in the phrase "a roof over one's head". Some of the most primitive shelters are only a roof- and Christopher Alexander and his co-authors had some serious thoughts about our building's roofs and all they must do: (the following list is directly from the book)
- The space under a roof must be useful space, space that people come in contact with daily. The whole feeling of shelter comes from the fact that the roof surrounds people at the same time that is covers them.
- Seen from afar, the roof of the building must be made to form a massive part of the building. When you see the building, you see the roof. This is perhaps the most dramatic feature of a strong, sheltering roof.
- And a sheltering roof must be placed so that one can touch it. If it is pitched or vaulted, some part of the roof must come down low to the ground, just in a place where there is a path, so that it becomes a natural thing to touch the roof edge as you pass it.
WOW! How can you not be inspired to design an awesome, sheltering roof after reading that?!
|Front of the House|
|Back of the House|
|Touch a roof as you walk out of the kitchen door? perhaps...|
- The space under the main roof is useful space - it is bedrooms and a bathroom. In the case of the master bedroom and the screen/sun porch, the ceiling is vaulted so that the space under that roof increases the volume of the space, creating a feeling of being surrounded by the roof.
- Seen from afar, the roof is a very prominent feature because of it's covering of the second floor with dormers poking out. Using metal as the roofing material will also call attention to it and make a dramatic, strong visual statement.
- Now... touching it from the ground... maybe... my clients are quite tall and athletic. :) And we do have some awesome thick eaves and bracketed overhangs over some doors. Building codes do require a minimum headroom height, and I don't know if physically touching the roof inside or out is likely, but figuratively, this roof and the sloped ceilings in many of the spaces will call attention to themselves in a way that another less sheltering roof (or flat ceilings) would not.
|Sheltering roof over a door|
We used pre-fabricated Hunter Cool-Vent panels on this project. They were installed atop the roof sheathing and the metal roof will then go atop of it. (after some other high-tech barriers and membranes that you see covering the roofs in the photos) A one inch air space above the insulation vents the underside of the metal roofing, keeping it cool to prevent expansion and contraction. This house will be quiet, warm in winter and cool in summer, have low energy bills and very little air infiltration. (Yes, it needs mechanical ventilation) With rooms in the roof, this system is extremely valuable at keeping those second floor spaces comfortable.
So the roof is doing many jobs both practical and aesthetic - and maybe even a little psychological as well. It is a high-tech, advanced performance system with the appeal of traditional forms and materials that does the important job of meeting our most basic human need for shelter. It evokes protection and contributes as a prominent design feature of the building while enclosing useful spaces that surround those who live there. It creates one of the most important layers of insulation between inside and outside, and, of course, it will keep out the rain & snow, too.