Coastal Farmhouse

Simple, clean, functional, durable, and super energyefficient— this interpretation of a New England farmhouse with attached barn is situated to work with the steep grading of the site, to maximize solar orientation (with south-facing glazing for solar heat gain in the winter), for easy accessibility for homeowners and guests alike, and to take advantage of views toward Maquoit Bay in Freeport.

The house is designed to meet the needs of a family of four (two adults and two children) and their large dog, with provisions for entertaining and aging in place. This will be the owners’ forever house, as they are eager to move closer to family and enjoy the woods, water, and more relaxed lifestyle of southern Maine.

The house and barn are attached for easy access throughout the year and for cost savings (reducing plumbing and allowing shared bathrooms for the workshop in the garage and the bunkroom above). The bend between the barn and the house responds to the natural grading, breaks down the perceived length of the home, and creates unique and fun corners with views toward the water beyond.

The first floor is primarily public space. An open-concept kitchen, dining, and living area and a large deck and screened porch all face east toward the water and south toward the sun. The second floor includes bedrooms, bathrooms, and the “rumpus room”—a separate room for family activities.

The house is designed for net-zero energy use, with photovoltaic panels on the roof to offset all the energy demand for the house and barn. It features 12-inch-thick double-stud exterior walls filled with densepacked cellulose, triple-glazed windows and doors, four inches of rigid insulation beneath the concrete slab foundation, deep roof overhangs to control light on the south side, a highly efficient heating and cooling system, and an energy recovery ventilator to circulate fresh air.

Location: Freeport

Architect: Harry Hepburn, Briburn

Project Manager: Lucas Greco

Builder: Benjamin & Company

Structural Engineer: Nathan Merrill, Albert Putnam Associates

Landscape Architect: Soren DeNiord Design Studio

Construction start: Fall 2018

Construction complete: Fall 2019