Brian J. Mac
Otter Creek Engineering
Silver Maple Construction
J.W. & D.E. Ryan
AutoDesk, Benjamin Moore, Hewn Elements, Rais, Schuco
Castleton, United States
A-Frame is a single-family private residence located on the shore of Lake Bomoseen in Castleton, Vermont. The project sits on the western side of the lake with southern exposure and is adjacent to the vehicular bridge, which connects the eastern and western shores.
The primary site constraints included a myriad of wetland and lake setbacks that drove the building footprint location and configuration.
Programmatically, the house is designed for maximum lake views, access to the lakefront, entry arrival, and garage access. The plan is divided into two separate living spaces.
The primary living space includes an entry mudroom, powder room, utility, kitchen, dining, living, two-bedroom suite, primary bedroom suite, upper roof deck, and a two-car garage.
The secondary living space includes a separate entry, living space, kitchen, dining, and a two-bedroom suite with roof deck access.
Conceptually, the project is inspired by a minimalist, lake-camp archetype: the mid-century A-frame. This iconic form, with its compact, singular, steeply pitched roof, is reimagined into three intertwined A-frame structures.
Two of the A-frames are joined at a 40-degree intersection and the third is perpendicular to one end of that elongated form.
Along one segment, the roof system is stripped away to reveal an A-shaped open-timber scrim over a shared outdoor deck space on the second floor.
The scrim extends to the ground to create an open deck space and private side entry on the first floor. This abstraction of the form pays homage to the minimalist structure, revealing the craft and process of the architectural language.
A-Frame is designed and oriented specifically to its site, capturing natural light and lake views to the south, minimizing northern exposure, and referencing the adjacent bridge. The structure is set atop a concrete slab on grade, minimizing site excavation, floor framing, and finishes.
The majority of the form is constructed of prefabricated roof panels built off-site and craned into place, speeding construction and minimizing waste. The building’s exterior consists primarily of highly insulated roof panels along with cedar-clad infill walls and thermally broken European tilt-turn windows, forming an efficient and performative envelope.
The main living space incorporates an operable louver wall on the second floor, allowing for natural ventilation and lighting. Exterior wood slats provide passive shading for south-facing windows, and fenestration is minimized on the north façade.
In winter months, an efficient gas stove provides supplemental heating, and fresh air exchange is mechanically delivered through a whole-house HRV system. The landscape preserves an existing wetland and minimizes plantings to create a natural and seamless connection to the lake shore.