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Kapiti Coast House

Desiring the warmth, character and durability of natural timber, the owners of this house reluctantly discarded the originally preferred traditional log construction due to the sheer size of the house and consequent difficulties in sourcing material and skilled tradespeople.

The alternative compromise of log frame and traditional construction retained most of the characteristic and visual qualities that natural wood has to offer within the limited budget.

In spite of the change, sourcing constant diameter logs of sufficiently high finish for the project proved a challenge, as was the methodology for joining the various timber components. TTT Products Limited., the suppliers of the logs, created new milling machinery to allow the logs to be accurately scalloped so that the logs could be neatly housed together, concealing the steel dowels.

Locating the logs internally, except the pool room, allowed the timber frames to be expressed in their entirety whilst simplifying the weather proofing of the external skin. Radiata pine has been used for the main structural frame with Kwila, Douglas Fir and Cedar being used elsewhere.

The methodology utilised in the building of the project, although not of total log construction, had significant cost and construction benefits whilst maintaining the durable and visual qualities that natural wood has to offer.


Winner – Residential Engineering Excellence
NZ Wood Timber Design Awards 2009