Ravine Residence

Location Toronto, Ontario
Status Completed 2006
Size 11,600 sq.ft / 1,080 m²
Partner Siamak Hariri
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“[...] every single day we enjoy the house. We enjoy the home. We enjoy the design. Siamak loves to remind us of the different moments that we would experience in the house, and every day we enjoy the moments. [...] We love coming home, we enjoy being here and it’s a beautiful house.”

— David Meyerowitz

Located within a large ravine system in a North Toronto neighbourhood, this family residence’s form and spatial configuration relate directly to qualities found on site. The 11,600 square foot home establishes a dialogue between street and wooded valley, articulated through a play of light, volume and material. Crafted in limestone and roughcast stucco, the exterior fits the neighbourhood’s character. The solid mass of the slightly curved façade presents a subdued and private face to the street. As one moves through the interior, the large windows open the house to the ravine, creating a feeling of spaciousness and the sense that the backyard is a tree-walled room.

Structural steel framing, with chimneys used as lateral bracing, allow for expansive interiors. Carefully placed windows enhance views and maximize light. A consistent palette of limestone and walnut flooring flows through the space and creates a feeling of sophisticated comfort. In keeping with the home’s relationship with nature, the building process was carefully managed to minimize damage to the surrounding habitat, reduce construction waste, and reuse materials. The completed design achieves the client’s desire to create an enduring generational home, and in so doing, evokes a sense of permanence. The residence received the 2010 Tucker Design Award’s Building Stone Institute Award of Excellence.

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