House With the Blue Shutters

Square Footage: 2456 sq. ft.
Date Completed: 2011

Typical of many West End houses in Provincetown, this early 20th century home on the water is situated on a tight lot in a Historic district. The interior was divided into many small rooms with low ceilings and a dated kitchen and bathrooms. In addition, there were structural issues as most of the second floor was under-framed and sagging. The walk-out basement level had a very low ceiling, and as a result was dark and dank. The owners charged us to open up the floor plan, take advantage of the views and Provincetown light, and make the basement level livable.

We were restricted by the Historic Commission to keep the front and side elevations very similar to existing, however we were able to push an addition off the rear by ten feet and to incorporate more extensive decking overlooking the water. We kept the existing window and shutter style and extended the cedar hipped roof with exposed rafter tails. The basement slab and basement level deck were lowered a foot which helped to make the lower walk out space airy, livable, and more connected to the outside. We worked with our engineer to design a new structure to support the second floor that minimized the thickness of the floor, which he did through a series of steel beams. This allowed us to keep the living room ceilings higher and maximize the amount of water-side glazing. This was key in the design of this house—tying the house to the incredible views of Provincetown Harbor and beyond, with its ever-changing light, tide, and wildlife. Views to the water are from nearly everywhere in the main living space and master bedroom.