2018 Awards

Design: Residential, Single Family Home

Honor Award

Pacific Sights
Arterra Landscape Architects
Lead Landscape Architect: Vera Gates

The Bay View. The openness of the metal grid fence further connects the garden and house to the bay and views to Angel Island. A variety foliage color and texture provides interest throughout the seasons.
Back View. The landscape responds the architecture by picking up and playing off of angles and materials. The design of the small backyard integrates a large house into the site and the context of the city.
Back Detail. The grading of the back garden was designed to make the garden feel like one space while providing connections to three levels of the house.
Back Garden. Access to the lower level gym is integrated into the garden with gently rising planted terraces. The transparency of the metal fence creates an infinity edge to the property.
Planting Detail. Architectural plants with unique form, and flowers add to the contemporary palette.
Back Wall and Terrace Detail. The contemporary plant palette of Aeonium and Strelizia respond to the contemporary style of the house. The geometry of the garden is accented by the clean lines of the planting
Aerial View of Back Garden.
Staggered steps and terraces link the house to the garden on three levels. Bold, linear plantings accent the hardscape and create a striking view for the main living level and bedroom decks above.
Section. The section shows the cisterns.
Conceptual Sketch, Back Plan. The angled design of the back garden orients views to the bay beyond. Rotating the hardscape activates the small shallow backyard and makes for a more dynamic composition.
Planter Detail. The foliage color of the Aeonimum picks up the accent colors of the house.
Front Garden Aerial View. The glass and metal fence was designed to allow the feel of the entry garden to spill into the streetscape and contribute to the garden home character of the neighborhood.
Paving and Wall Detail. Sand set stone with pebble joints and permeable pavers allow for surface water infiltration, allowing 58% of the landscape to be pervious.
Entry and Balcony. Materials in the landscape pick up the color and detailing of the house. The glass fence echoes the design of the balcony guardrail. Dark tile and pebbles carry the metal accent colors of the building into the garden.
Entry Garden. Native Ceaonthus standard form trees provide vertical definition for the courtyard. A water sculpture adds the sound of falling water.
Front of House. The entry garden of the house extends from façade to curb. A glass fence invites views into the courtyard landscape. Oversized
planting beds with Chinese elms provide additional greening for the neighborhood.
Site Plan. The master plan for the front and back gardens.

Set in the architecturally significant neighborhood of Pacific Heights in San Francisco, this LEED Platinum residence achieves high standards of sustainability through a collaborative approach. The Landscape Architect brought in maximum LEED landscape points for rainwater harvesting, permeable site design, water efficient planting and LED lighting.

The landscape design anchors the house into the site, reinforces key design elements of the architecture, and complements the neighborhood fabric. Engaging the street with a transparent fence, the entry garden contributes to neighborhood greening in combination with new streetscape plantings.

The architects chose a dramatic angle for the back of the home to orient windows and balconies toward bay and city views, and the site design responds by aligning to the two axes. Gentle terracing links three levels of the house to the garden. Under the ground, cisterns collect 50% of the roof runoff to supply the irrigation system with 1,500 gallons of rainwater.

This project demonstrates that small sites can achieve top performance, high level design and respond to an urban context with style.