Texas firm Matt Fajkus Architecture has completed a family home in Austin that features rooms with sliding glass walls, enabling the spaces to be fully opened to the outdoors (+ slideshow).
Called the Main Stay House, the dwelling is located on a slender urban lot in Austin's Bouldin Creek neighbourhood.
Encompassing 3,271 square feet (304 square metres), the two-storey house contains four bedrooms, an office, a playroom and a slender yard with a swimming pool.
The project was designed to enable "lifestyle flexibility" through clean lines, modest materials and a strong connection to the outdoors.
"The house isn't about over-the-top opulence, but style, creativity and substance," said Matt Fajkus Architecture, noting that the home was constructed for $250 (£173) per square foot.
The dwelling is fronted by an opaque bar, lined with stucco and clad in grey ironspot brick – a textured brick made with a mix that results in colour variations. Rectangular pavers lead to a hidden front door.
Behind the brick face is a two-storey volume sheathed in glass, wood, stucco and grey siding. A balcony is visible from the street.
"The entry sequence is a twist upon the conventional domestic front door, front facade and fence," the firm described.
"The masonry wall replaces the typical residential fence and frames an indirect access to the front door, functioning as a privacy barrier while revealing slices of the interior to the public street."
Inside, a staircase bifurcates the layout, providing a division between the home's communal and private zones.
In addition to the master bedroom, the ground floor contains an open-concept living room, dining room and kitchen.
The south side of the home features retractable glass walls, which enable interior rooms to merge with a side yard and pool terrace.
The pool area "capitalises on the dappled light" from a tree on the property and is partly shaded by a roof overhang.
A slim, wooden staircase leads to the upper level, which houses two bedrooms, a playroom and a guest suite.
The hot climate of central Texas was a guiding force during the design process. The architect oriented the building in a way that minimises solar gain while enabling an abundance of natural light.
"Various openings are carefully considered in each interior space to withstand the harsh west sun, providing a balance of daylight and shading while reducing reliance to artificial lighting," the firm said.
The team incorporated double-glazed windows with low-E coatings. The windows are operable to facilitate cross-ventilation.
"The inside of the house is cool enough to live without a functioning air conditioner, even in the hottest months," the firm said.
The architect integrated other eco-friendly elements, such as low-solvent paint and wood products that use formaldehyde-free binders.
"Materials, finishes and surfaces are carefully considered, cleverly composed and crisply detailed," the firm said.
Other residential projects in Texas include a lakefront retreat with a slender lap pool by Lake Flato and a concrete-and-glass dwelling by Wernerfield with a treehouse clad in pre-rusted steel.
Architect: Matt Fajkus Architecture
Project manager: Sarah Johnson
Design team: Matt Fajkus, Sarah Johnson, David Birt
Graphic support: Brandon Hubbard; Jose Gallegos
General contractor: Brodie Builders Structural engineer: Smith Structural Engineers
Interior designer: Joel Mozersky Design
Landscape designer: Open Envelope Studio