The 1925 bungalow’s location on a bluff overlooking the Downtown and Midtown skylines of Atlanta gave the original house beautiful views to the southwest, but in Georgia the deck could become unbearably hot in the summertime. Additionally, the back of the house consisted of two bedrooms leading to what had been sleeping porches, later turned into a home office. While that layout worked in the pre-air-conditioned home, it didn’t work for modern living. The owners also wanted to add a primary bedroom suite, and update a basement apartment to rent.
The challenge was to make all these upgrades, to create a more shaded deck, add a second story, and modernize the floor plan without disturbing the traditional appearance from the street. But this was also an opportunity to create surprise and delight. The house slowly transforms as one moves from the front to the back, becoming more and more informal. Spaces open up in surprising ways to create an open and breezy environment. Natural light and ventilation are introduced from surprising angles. An additional challenge was to do this within the constraints of the Residential Building Code and using typical construction techniques.