When designer Joel Contreras decided to renovate his 1927 bungalow in Phoenix’s Coronado Historic District, he wanted to respectfully preserve the building’s past while also incorporating his love for contemporary architecture. Jonah Busick of Foundry12 happened to live in the same neighborhood, so Contreras hired the architect to help him reach that vision.
“The concept was to have a half-historic, half-modern house,” says Busick, who was excited about working on a project that would enhance his own community. After bouncing ideas collaboratively back and forth, the two decided to give the 800-square-foot house two “faces” by maintaining the original red brick walls at the front and constructing a steel, glass and concrete addition at the back—ultimately doubling the house’s footprint to 1,602 square feet.
But how to keep these distinct spaces from feeling oddly disjointed? Busick visually connected them by extending the existing gable roof form across the entire length of the house. A series of shaded patios also help with the transition, not to mention the hot Arizona climate. The further in a person walks, the more the home unfolds into the elements. “The inspiration was based on a variation of a ‘dogtrot’ house, where a breezeway or porch would typically separate different spaces within the home,” the architect explains. The resulting design means Contreras never actually has to choose between being outside and inside—much less between the old and the new.