Alan from Miller-Hull visited today to take a look at the property. Alan is working with the principal architect, who came out a few weeks ago to talk about the site. Alan was still in Alaska at the time, where he spent 6 months on a project there and blogged about his experience. We’ve narrowed the possible sites down a bit, but the next step is to get a topographical survey of the property, including the locations of trees, so that we can zero in on where we can and can’t build. We’re in the process of getting bids from surveyors.
We’ve all but decided the house won’t sit on the same foundation as the existing house. It may be just a little to the northeast of the current house where the property is still at a higher elevation which would require less dirt to move (which is expensive) and would give us a good view and southern exposure to the sun. But close to that location are some great big Douglas Fir trees that we want to keep. You can’t build too close to a tree without damaging it or killing it and there’s not enough room between the trees to put a house. I’ll be surprised if the house ends up being a single unit rather than separate living areas across the width of the yard joined by breezeways of some kind to skirt around the trees. I love this kind of design challenge!