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Architect: Stillwater Dwellings
Custom Cabinets: Smith and Vallee Woodworks
Location: Samish Neighborhood, Bellingham 
Photographer: Chris DiNottia

Background

We have been intrigued by the growing interest in prefabricated new homes and we’re excited when we were approached about building a Stillwater Dwellings home. Stillwater Dwelling homes feature dramatic natural lighting, beautiful finishes and thoughtful, right-sized floor plans. 

Planning

The design phase of this project was well underway when we joined the project, which made it somewhat unusual for us. On the vast majority of our projects we use an integrated design model and are involved from the initial planning phases. This model provides an opportunity for us to guide conversations about buildability, affordability and building performance while the project is still malleable.

In this case, the wall systems were already designed but the mechanical systems, building envelope details and interior finishes were still in progress. This allowed us to facilitate some important conversations about building performance, which helped move the project in a greener direction, but it also meant that some important decisions had already been made that limited the opportunities for a deeper green building envelope. Regardless, the building performance details that were incorporated into this project resulted in a home that is more comfortable, durable, healthy and efficient.

Building Performance Details

  • High-performance weather resistive barrier to increase the home’s durability
  • Advanced mechanical system with a heat recovery ventilator (HRV)
  • Mini-split heat pump for heating and cooling
  • Heat pump hot water tank
  • Extensive solar panel array

In the green building world people often highlight the comfort, durability, health and efficiency of high-performance homes. More recently, resilience has been added to that list, a nod to climate change and the growing need to buffer our homes against it. This project hits all of these points. The details of the mechanical systems and the building envelope harmonize with the overall design to make a durable building that will withstand the elements in style.

“If I can tell you one thing about Chuckanut Builders, it would be that they produce high quality work using A-list professionals. We are so glad we chose them to work with us to build our pre-paneled eco-home. We enjoy the workmanship every day”. – Prefab homeowner

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