Designer Richard Tubb gives his Alabama lake house a glass-walled addition that blurs the boundaries between inside and out.
Set at the edge of a clear, deep lake just north of Birmingham, the unassuming home of designer Richard Tubb and his partner, Danny Weaver, rises like a tree house from the shore. In the evenings, it glows like a lantern, becoming a beacon of sorts for boaters on Smith Lake. Architect and friend Jeff Dungan designed the home’s addition.
The original cabin was initially purchased as a “mail-order” kit. Accompanied by an instruction manual, these mass-produced prefab homes arrived on-site in as many as 12,000 pieces. Rather than force an addition directly onto the cabin, architect Jeff Dungan designed a separate, freestanding structure and connected the two with a breezeway.
Jeff’s design left the original house untouched, adding the single room at the front edge of the home’s existing porch and leaving that space to function as a breezeway between the old and new structures. To maximize lake views, he sited the addition as close as possible to the water’s edge, which required removing some of the pine trees on the rocky shoreline. Jeff paid homage to those trees by supporting the new structure with seven tapered timber poles, varying their heights and locations. “I wanted the placement of those columns to be random, which created some engineering challenges,” says Jeff. “But in nature, trees grow where their seeds land, and that’s the same effect we implemented here.” READ MORE