North Saanich Farm House
A custom home in North Saanich BC blends economy, scale, function, and livability, with a context-focused approach to siting.
Two distinct qualities of the site drive the design of this modern farmhouse on southern Vancouver Island.
One side is pastoral with fields and orchards; the other is characterized by rocky outcrops and a valley view of the ocean. Through an in-depth site study, we chose to place the house exactly in the middle of the site, stretching the narrow building form to 80 ft, positioning the house as the physical threshold between both sides of the site.
The architecture references the farmhouse vernacular, reinterpreted through a modern lens. It incorporates simple materials expressed in new ways and brings the 'outside in,' through carefully considered views 'captures.'
The clients asked for a simple, functional, floor plan with flexible spaces for visiting family and a strong connection to the land and garden.
The house captures individual views through large windows, connecting the open plan to distinct trees and trajectories across the landscape. Parallel sets of sliding doors connect both sides of the dining room to each side of the property, emphasizing a 'second visual axis.'
We created strong site lines through the house to highlight the elongated form anchored by a large Garry Oak at the north end of the kitchen. We finished the house with modern, simple details and used knotty Western Red Cedar in clear and whitewashed stains to create a textured, clapboard feel, with a distinct West Coast connection.