Rest, presence, reflection, shelter – these were words commonly scattered throughout the incredible email chain between the clients and our team. The clients live in the EU, but used to day dream about a pied-a-terre in Vancouver. With an extended family member who owned a lot in East Vancouver, the path forward was clear; plans for a laneway house began to take shape.

The lot is on a corner, on one of those tight knit blocks where everyone knows one another. This was taken into consideration with some of the exterior elements: quaint without being cute, welcoming vs. concealed, warm minimalism. One of the most difficult parts of the process was the disruption to the immaculate garden in place before the construction of the lane house. Great care was taken by the homeowner to save specimens from the different plant varieties for replanting later – the bulk of which are in situ in the photos.

The result is a modern chalet with untreated cedar siding. The cedar will undoubtedly age in time, with some of the covered areas retaining their warm hues, but other more exposed spots moving to grey. The clients have shown commendable bravado here – letting a material age honestly can be hard. That being said, the tilt and turn westeck windows will retain their rigidity and colour for decades so the house will “Look like it has eyeliner” – the clients words 🙂

Inside, a galley kitchen (which are normally notoriously claustrophobic) feels spacious due to the open shelving and white solid cabinetry on the east wall. Rugged concrete and integrated appliances further add to the cleanliness. Interior details include solid oak window casings, a waterfall detail on the stair (hidden by a temporary railing for now until the glass arrives) and yes – a real wood burning stove – built by Stûv to the highest degree of emissions and efficiency available.

More nuts and bolts:

1 bedroom + den

1 bathroom

750 square feet

1.5 storey

Floor Plan



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