The successful transformation of this twenty acre site on the CT River included a close and early collaboration with the owner, architect and talented team of contractors. The site planning project began with relocating a steep and awkward driveway to meander through the native oak beech woodland while taking advantage of scenic river views. New buildings included an expanded house footprint, new breezeway, garage, walled vegetable garden /greenhouse, a new pool, pool house, and maintenance barn. All of these architectural improvements are woven together with beautifully crafted stone walls, built from local granite and fieldstone and echoing the undulations of the Connecticut River.

Given prevailing state and local regulations governing the riparian setbacks, careful considerations were taken to preserve the vegetated view of the property from the river, capture and treat stormwater runoff and restore and enhance the woodlands surrounding the buildings. Entering the site, the visitor circulates through the woods, experiencing native plant communities and mature stands of trees. The approach to the house precinct is defined by the emergence of curved stone walls. The entry court is defined by a series of stepped stone planter walls, transitioning to a native meadow above it. The curved stone walls continue to weave throughout the site with lawn paths and garden beds, referencing the river flow. A series of woodland trails allows access to a restored native woodland, glorious throughout the seasons. The riparian curves are also expressed in the vanishing edge of the pool.

2017 CTASLA Honor Award

Architect | George Penniman Architects

Connecticut River Compound