When purchased by our clients, this stately River Oaks home was in need of updating, and required additional living and bedroom spaces for a growing family. The design challenges were many. The house was a very formal Harvin Moore design from the 30’s, very attractive, but with low ceilings. Meanwhile, the lot was peppered with beautiful oak trees that the owners were determined to preserve. RLA’s solution was to locate an 1,800 SF addition between the driveway and the balance of the yard, to preserve trees, screen service areas from the yard and to preserve existing views of the yard from the house. In order to address the ceiling height issue, portions of the addition step down from the main level, while both first and second floor spaces have higher ceilings than the original house. A ‘reveal’ is created between the new and the old to preserve the massing of the original house, and camofluage the height differences between the two structures.
The kitchen was relocated to the addition, where there was room for a more generous family-oriented space, adjacent to new breakfast and family rooms. Meanwhile the former kitchen and breakfast areas were converted to to laundry and home office, respectively. Upstairs, a new master suite takes advantage of views into the canopy of trees, while the other bedrooms and bathrooms were updated, and the stair hall adapted to accommodate the changes in floor levels.