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Transformation of 1950s ranch: Mines Road House

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Mines Road House is a modern update of a 1950s ranch in the oak studded hills of Livermore, California. Completed in early 2010 by MacCracken Architects, this 4,100 square foot private residence has undergone a complete ground up transformation from an existing Bay Area Ranch house to an open, contemporary dwelling, paying tribute to the merits of the original building design. The architects goal was to create a new dwelling which incorporated our interpretation of California modern design: clean continuous lines, open loggias, natural materials, and an unfettered relationship between inside and outside.

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Large limestone pavers replace the previous poured dark concrete, and due to its reflectance, provide a cool walking surface even on hot days.

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The building wraps three sides of an open courtyard where two mature oaks provide shade for an outside dining area.

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Once inside the structure, the same limestone paver is used throughout the interior rooms with minimal door thresholds between the interior and exterior spaces. The wood clad exterior cedar is carried into in the wooden ceilings, and spaces are brightened with linear skylights. Generously sized wood windows replaced the original aluminum sliders and are located with attention to exterior landmarks and interior functions.

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The remodel has significantly changed the aesthetic of the building while capitalizing on efficiency and energy performance. In addition to modern insulation, low-flow fixtures, high efficiency Lighting, HVAC and irrigation systems, a solar array was installed out of direct sight allowing the owners the ability to generate substantial on-site power during the summer months.

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Photos: Rien Van Rijthoven

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