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The Sagaponack Modern Green Barn


To “trip the light fantastic” means to dance nimbly. This house encourages movement and play, it lifts one’s spirit and plays on the words of Lawler’s 1894 song; “. . . me and Mamie O’Roarke, tripped the light fantastic, on the sidewalks of New York.” 

This three level home, inspired by vernacular potato barns, was designed with sustainability as the key goal. This unique home will receive 6, 3rd party ratings: LEED for Homes, National Green Building Standard, Energy Star, and the Department of Energy (DOE) Challenge Home, Indoor Air Plus and Water Sense certificates. 

From inside, the gable ends light up and distribute daylight softly and evenly. At night, soft light is reflected and mirrored; a magical translucent calm prevails. The opacity of the wood-slatted pilasters, a nod to the structural buttresses of the potato barn, shifts at dusk and diffused light begins to glow through the polycarbonate-backed wood slats. 

The thermally efficient shell is constructed of 8” Magnesium-oxide SIPS wall panels (R-36) and 10” thick steel skin SIPS roof panels (R-45). Foundation walls are pre-insulated, manufactured units set on a gravel footing (R-21 + R-13 added in field). 

Exposed engineered beams allowed us to open the ridge and invite soft light into every room. Large open spaces , catwalks and lofts add to the barn-like atmosphere. Triple-glazed windows and folding doors (Avg. U-Factor: .14) allow the house to be open to the pools, patios, decks and covered porches that surround the perimeter. 

The building is compact and easy to maintain, it is fun, yet sophisticated. Movies can be viewed outside in the courtyard or inside in the theater. Interior drama in every direction, daylight brings true color to artwork and people and the structure is exposed and infused into every space. At night the outside comes alive, defining the myriad areas to sit and watch those who nimbly “trip the light fantastic”. 

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