Projects: Residential/Homes

Garcia Residence

Oakland, CA

The Intent

A family who lost their home in the 1991 Oakland Hills fire came to KTA to design a new home to replace the one they lost. The new home was to have the feel of the family's original California Mediterranean style house while maximizing the hilltop site's access to breezes, natural light and striking views.

KTA's goal was to help the family make something positive from the tragedy of the fire.

The Solution

The Owners had lived in their previous home for fifteen years prior to the fire. They became active participants in the design process. KTA utilized the family's intimate knowledge of the site to plan the layout and orientation of the spaces to fit the family's life to the smallest detail.

KTA literally created "frames" for spectacular views at each level of the house. A living room with fireplace overlooks the Oakland Hills. The library opens to a large slate deck offering a 180-degree vista of San Francisco Bay. Two studios on the third floor, each with a balcony and trellised deck, feature stunning views. A rooftop deck on the fourth floor offers the highest observation spot for miles.

KTA cleverly maximized the home's available living space in spite of a steep site, a small available building footprint and City of Oakland planning restrictions on rebuilt homes in the area. The 4,500-square-foot living space houses five bedrooms, three-and-a-half baths, family room, large kitchen with an eating area and a two-car garage with dumbwaiter.

A retaining wall was added to create a level outdoor area, a feature that the original house did not have. Different layers of patios and porches allow the family to enjoy the typically pleasant climate. A covered outdoor area has a swimming pool plus whirlpool, exercise equipment and a patio.

Special features include a secured front door and yard and in-floor heating. Materials of the highest quality like cherry wood, slate and granite were used throughout the home. Squeak-proof floors were constructed from engineered lumber joists and the house is kept comfortable with in-floor heating.

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