Woodstock, Vermont | 2019


Located on a hillside meadow, Bank Barn is a new residence conceptually inspired by the eponymous regional farm structures built into the banks of hills. At Bank Barn, a weathered cedar gable form is situated atop two 160’ linear concrete retaining walls. Utilizing the sloping topography, the support spaces and garage entrance are concealed below grade to create an extended plinth for the floor above. The main floor features an open living arrangement in a minimalist palette of exposed steel, plaster, concrete and curtainwall with expansive and uninterrupted views beyond. The concrete walls extend the living space outside with decks, green roof, hot tub and fire pit. Inside, a central freestanding steel staircase provides a sculptural pathway to the ensuite bedrooms above.

Bank Barn required intensive energy consultation and modeling as a central element of the design process.  Early in the design process the house was modeled to assess the design in terms of energy efficiency, thermal comfort and visual comfort.  This modelling determined the exterior envelope features and performance requirements, including thermally separated r-40 walls and an r-60 roof, closed-cell polyurethane foam cavities, target air-tightness of 0.6 ACH @50 pascals and a high performance, triple glazed curtainwall with a specified 0.15 u-value.

As the design developed the residence was additionally analyzed to help determine the mechanical system design and specifications, both from an annual energy usage perspective and from a life-cycle cost analysis.  The final design, an electricity-based energy system with geothermal heating and cooling through water-to-water and water-to-air systems as well as heat recovery ventilators, was peer reviewed to confirm equipment sizing and performance.  The project was designed to be a net-zero residence pending a future 18 kw solar array.





Landscape Architect

Wagner Hodgson Landscape Architecture


Environmental Design

Atelier Ten






Jim Westphalen Photography



2019 AIAVT Honor Award
2019 AIANE Citation Award

2023 Dwell
2023 Architizer
2022 Seven Days VT – Spring Nest
2021 Home World Design
2021 Archello
2021 Masterpiece Series Monograph by Oscar Riera Ojeda Publishers
2020 Metropolis Magazine
2020 Dezeen
2020 Curbed
2020 ArchDaily
2019 Vermont Business Magazine
2019 The New York Times



Delve deeper into this award winning home.

Bank Barn Birdseye
A Masterpiece Series design book by Oscar Riera Ojeda Publishing

Bridging the familiar and unique, Bank Barn is a net zero designed private residence located on a hillside meadow in rural Vermont. Recognized with the 2019 AIA Vermont Honor Award and the 2019 AIA New England Merit Award for design excellence. Bank Barn was designed and built by the architecture and building company, Birdseye, an employee-owned business located in Richmond, Vermont. Bank Barn represents Vermont traditions of craft and sustainability while also reflecting the visual details of modern contemporary design.

Forward by Mike Gordon | Introduction by Tim McKeough  |  Epilogue by Brian J. Mac, FAIA
Interview by Vladimir Belogolovsky  |  Photography by Jim Westphalen


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