A Prairie Inspired Not-So-Big House

This prairie inspired home uses sustainable materials (such as bamboo and ceramic tile), sustainable methods (passive solar heating, central vacuum system, a fire sprinkler system, high efficiency water softener, and a 5-zone in-floor radiant heat in the basement). Sustainable design techniques (durable design for versatility) include wheelchair accessibility from the front, side, and garage entrances to the main floor; the Massage Room doubles as a spare bedroom and the Away Room now doubles as a separate dining room / study. The second floor is very private. The multipurpose area has a Kitchenette Laundry and Exercise Area and is open to the husband’s Office and the Craft Room doubles as a spare bedroom. The Master Bedroom, just big enough for the bed, contributes space to a lavish Master Bath with his and hers sinks, a steam shower, and a walk-in closet with custom cabinetry.

The four-foot wide roof overhang and decks provide the right shading for the solar windows.

The Living-Family Room opens to the Kitchen and provides an open, spacious feel.

Spacious office, with great views, opens off the multi-purpose room.

Upstairs multi-purpose room, with Kitchenette on the left, laundry in the corner, and exercise equipment opposite.

Mechanical room with heat pump (gray). Round, tan tank is the heater for the basement’s in-floor radiant heat, and has 5 zones. Light gray “paint” on ductwork joints is mastic, to seal all the joints. Sealing the ductwork is important because it allows all the comfort to be delivered it was designed to provide.

Black “Venmar” box (below) is the Energy Recovery Ventilator (ERV). It exhausts stale air, brings in fresh air, recovers the heat and maintains the conditioned interior humidity levels—a real advantage in both summer and winter.. Vertical pipes are the polyethylene water pipes, each with its own turn-off valve. The red box is the monitor for the fire sprinkler system.