MWA designed this modern home nestled in Portland’s Historic Mississippi Avenue District for Shift Vacation Rentals. Tucked behind an older craftsman house, the Rear Break House is a new 5-bedroom, 3-bath home that is fully ADA accessible on the ground floor.
Strong indoor-outdoor relationships are emphasized in the design. The ground floor living space directly engages the outdoors with a dynamic urban courtyard created between the new and existing houses forming an extension of the living spaces. Upstairs the 4 bedrooms flank a shared lounge that opens onto an upstairs deck.
Providing a model for increasing urban density, the Rear Break House demonstrates efficiency in design. This house was built with a very tight budget and employs a cost efficient siding system that uses affordable materials in an innovative way. For example, the use of HardiePanel with an oversize batten at a tighter spacing creates a rich surface texture. The house uses a high efficiency heat pump and employs exterior insulation to improve the thermal envelope. In addition, vertical proportions give the building an upright character, and a flat roof minimizes the bulk of the 2,000 sf home.