Middleton-Waln Barn Residence
For a young urban professional couple, we collaborated with the New Jersey Barn Co and designed the adaptive reuse of a late 18th century, English barn frame as the core of this weekend house. The hand hewn timbers of this 3-bay frame create an open and rustic loft-like home on the south fork of Long Island. The house is sited with the ridge along an east-west axis. The long sidewalls are oriented to the south and north, capturing natural daylight and taking advantage of views over farm fields held in perpetuity by an agricultural reserve easement. The former barn door opening has been retrofitted with a multiple French door and transom window assembly and floods the interior with light. The house is designed to capture the prevailing breezes and be naturally cooled during the summer months. Operable windows high in the walls open to induce a stack effect and flush hot air from the space. The exterior walls are wrapped in cedar shingles that have naturally grayed in the sea air. The green shingle roof mimics those of the potato barns that dot nearby farms. The interior frame was faithfully restored with the core living, dining and cooking spaces occupying the 3 bays on the main level. An open loft provides a more intimate living space above the kitchen. We wrapped an “L” of new construction around the timber frame to accommodate vertical circulation and the smaller scale, more private sleeping, bathing and storage functions. Original white oak threshing boards are laid in the center Dining bay. Their rough texture contrasts the remaining wide plank, white pine flooring. A free-standing, brick fireplace and metal pipe chimneys divide the Dining and Living areas without interrupting the open volume of the barn frame. We set industrial steel wire mesh within painted wood frames to create open and sturdy guard and stair railings. Reclaimed sliding door hardware and the inventive reuse of iron fencing continue the reinterpreted barn theme in this comfortable and striking home.