Hudson Passive Project: a look inside


The Hudson Passive house is small and simple but provides a surprisingly rich and varied composition of interior spaces.  It feels much larger than you would expect from its modest footprint.

This is largely due to the fact that a window occupies the entire south elevation of the house.  This is the gable end of a simple two story shed so plenty of earth and sky are visible to link the interior to the landscape beyond and dramatically augment of the sense of space.  The volume of the timber framed building is configured to allow most of the places in the house to stay visually connected to the big south-facing window.  This has obvious benefits for keeping the house warm in the winter when the low sun can fully penetrate.  It also means that the interior areas feel both intimate and spacious with abundant natural light and long views.  The three bedrooms (one on the ground floor and two in the loft space) and two bathrooms occupy the north end of the house.  The relatively open plan not only makes the house flexible, but also allows each place to borrow volume from its neighbor, making the house add up to more than the sum of its parts.

The kitchen is literally and figuratively at the heart of the matter in the Hudson Passive house.  It helps to delineate the entry vestibule, the living room, and the vertical circulation.  It also serves as the interface between the public and private zones.  Because the kitchen is present to so many areas it needs to provide all of its specialized functions without making those adjacent spaces feel like they are extensions of it.  KR+H designed the kitchen to add character and warmth to the open volume of the double height space at the south end of the house.  The vertical grain douglas fir surfaces and sculptural geometry of the island impart a furniture-like feel to the cabinetry.  The kitchen/living room will be the social center of the house; we made sure to produces something worthy of filling that role.