The Balcones Residence was originally designed by Roland Roessner, a professor at the University of Texas and prominent modern home architect. When the clients bought the two-bedroom home from the original owners, they looked into all the mid-century modern things and hired the local firm Clayton & Little to oversee a sensitive renovation of the 165-square-foot building.
The house was designed with clean lines, simple shapes, and modest and affordable materials. The architects tried to keep the original character of the house by adding square meters, updating the finishes and improving energy efficiency.
The entrance to the house has been changed. Brick walls have been added to create an open-air garden which sets a more formal entrance sequence. On the north side, the team added a box-shaped volume that contains an office and utility room. Windows were added in the backyard in the family room and living room – a feature that was part of Roessner’s original design.
Significant changes were made to the kitchen, which hadn’t been renovated since the house was built. To create a more open public area, the team removed a unit that served as both a room divider and a structural component. A new steel beam and a new steel column were installed to make up for the loss of the load-bearing unit. Other new elements in the kitchen are worktops made of polished quartzite, white cabinets and cork floors. Original features such as wood paneling and a passage window between the kitchen and dining room have been retained.
The two bedrooms in the house have been combined into a single master suite. One side of the room is wrapped in warm mahogany while the other has a large window overlooking the courtyard. Special details include air grilles that are aligned with the grain of the wall cladding and a special bed frame that houses the owner’s motorized bed.
To improve the energy efficiency of the house, the team upgraded the building envelope by installing new insulation and double-glazed windows. Photovoltaic modules were installed above the carport and the guest house. Get more of this cool home below!