The jury commended architect David Jameson's ability to fuse the traditional style of the neighborhood with his clients' wishes for a more modern aesthetic. They said that “it didn't have an overly ostentatious quality” that is the downfall of so many big houses. “That's the whole idea of the project,” says Jameson of the judges'comments. “We took the program of a really big house and fused it into something clean and simple.”

The home's corner lot location was useful to that end. The entry façade lines up with other large and stately homes but takes on a quieter, more private tone as it turns the corner. For what he terms its “monumental façade,” Jameson speced traditional materials like slate and stone, but modernized them by eliminating mortar joints and transitions between elements. A limestone brise-soleil shades expansive glazing on this southern exposure and mitigates the home's oversized scale. The limestone picks up again on the private side of the house to set up an unapologetic contemporary rear elevation that adds glass, steel, and stucco to the white stone backdrop.

A flat-roofed architectural “hyphen” connecting two gabled roof sections brings natural light into the center of the plan. That caused the judges to praise the daylighting techniques Jameson used to brighten the home's innermost recesses. Inside this one-story “light monitor” is an open space containing the kitchen along with casual living and dining areas. Two pop-up boxes ringed with clerestory windows increase the daylight quotient enough to let it spill generously into the rest of the first floor. Catwalks link upstairs rooms, which means even more natural light finds it way through the plan's central circulation spine.

Project Credits
David Jameson Architect, Alexandria, Va.
Builder: GN Contracting, Arlington, Va.
Living space: 5,600 square feet
Site: .23 acre
Construction cost: Withheld
Photographer: Michael Moran Photography

Resources: Bathroom plumbing fittings: Dornbracht; Bathroom plumbing fixtures: Toto; Cabinets: Hill Enterprises Inc.; Dishwasher: Miele; Garage doors: Capitol Door; Kitchen plumbing fittings: KWC; Lighting fixtures: Iris; Oven: Thermador; Refrigerator: Sub-Zero; Roofing: Vermont Slate; Skylights: Velux; Windows, Weathershield.