rift house
location: bend, oregon year: 2017 size: 3,800sf status: unbuilt

Set on a long, narrow site backing up to the Deschutes National Forest, the design of the Rift House is heavily influenced by the site’s directionality, which lends pressure to look inward while at the same time embracing the boundless, wild terrain of the forest beyond. Lightfoot A+D designed the new 3,800sf residence for a young and extremely busy family who love to entertain and expand outdoors; accordingly, the program of the home is one that needs to strike a balance of day-to-day usability and efficiency, whilst providing a variety of options for engaging with nature year-round. 

The home is comprised of two long, bent bars of program linked by a glass entry portal, yielding a vaguely “X’ shaped parti. The shorter southern bar houses a collection of bedrooms for parents and children as well as family-oriented informal gathering spaces. The longer northern bar houses the more public daily functions and back-of-house prep and storage spaces. The splayed courtyard spaces between each bar offer opportunities for varying types of protected outdoor rooms to co-exist with the corresponding indoor spaces, yielding a compelling indoor-outdoor hybrid in which the character of the interior spaces changes dynamically throughout the day and the year. 

A robust material palette presents itself in the architecture, most notably via the presence of raw board-formed concrete walls running parallel to the long axis of the site, as well as in a monolithic concrete fireplace that helps to visually anchor the light and airy vaulted living room space. Floor-to-ceiling glass walls in key locations reinforce connections to the internal courtyards, and also appear facing west to the forest beyond in the living room and master suite.