This compound in Mendocino County plans for the congregate living, evolving mutual support, and eventual retirement of eleven people whose ages range from mid 40s to mid 60s. Designed to “grow old” with the clients, buildings are arranged to enhance the experience of the site, between natural meadow and dense forest. The programmatic requirements of private quarters modify basic sheds and anticipate change. Employing short-term cost and space-saving strategies and long-term phasing strategies, the project combines 5,000 s.f. of interior space with 3,000 s.f. of exterior space—verandas, dog trots, tent decks, and a central pavilion. The joint decision making process can be traced in the forms—both individual and common needs, as well as fiscal accounting are recorded in the shapes, color, and materials of the complex.

“From the beginning [F+H] suggested that we collect pictures of what appealed to us then at a meeting [F+H] mounted them on a large board so we could all see what was similar in our visions and what was not. That particular exercise gave us the sense that WE were leading the project, and that each individual would be heard.” — Jill Myers, Client


Photography credit: Richard Barnes