Russian Hill Residence
This urban infill project is an adaptive re-use of an underutilized one story concrete garage originally part of the adjacent apartment building, using it as the base for a new single-family residence on Russian Hill in San Francisco. Set at the end of a small alley, the building makes a natural transition step from an adjacent seven story apartment complex to a two story existing house to the south.
The project included a variance to have complete lot coverage on the ground floor, with raised exterior decks on the structure below to provide open space for occupants. A roof deck accessed by an exterior spiral staircase has a sweeping 180 degree view of the City from east to west. Two new horizontal boxes form layers above the garage on the narrow 20’ x 60’ property and staggered framed glass planes on the facade set the tone for what lies within. One of the main challenges was to accommodate typical residential program requirements for a three-bedroom house into the very narrow property. This is accomplished by placing primary spaces to the glass ends of the building. The garage, media room, storage rooms and mechanical are located on the fully covered first floor. Bedrooms and bathrooms are contained on the middle floor, allowing for a fully open kitchen and living floor on the third level where occupants spend the most time. The heavy structural system is exposed internally and left as raw steel with a matte sealer to contrast with the highly detailed interior materials, while also complimenting the intrinsic beauty of natural materials.