Wittman Estes and NODE use prefab elements to create rentable backyard cottage in Seattle - architecture and design

Wittman Estes and NODE use prefab elements to create rentable backyard cottage in Seattle



American firms Wittman Estes and NODE have created a prefabricated accessory dwelling unit, or ADU, that is wrapped in charred wood and runs entirely on solar power.
The building was created for a homeowner in west Seattle who wanted a one-bedroom studio in her backyard, which she could rent out or list on Airbnb.

"The client wanted a second unit to create an additional rental income that would be self-sustaining and affordable, generating economic and environmental productivity," said local firm Wittman Estes in a project description.
She asked the architects to design the dwelling, and it ended up becoming one in a series of models offered by NODE, a Washington-based company that creates eco-friendly, prefabricated dwellings.
"As a system of components, the entire home can be shipped almost anywhere and assembled in days," the architects said. "The simplicity of the home embodies a 'poetic pragmatism', believing that good design can be accessible to anyone."
Called Solar Studio, the project takes its name from the photovoltaics that line the sloped, south-facing roof. The solar panels generate enough electricity to power both the backyard cottage and the main house, according to the team.

Facades are wrapped in cedar planks that were charred using shou sugi ban, a traditional Japanese technique. Beyond enhancing the dwelling's appearance, the burnt wood helps reduce the need for upkeep. Dark grey corrugated metal was also used on the exter...
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