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Wurl Wood Studio and House Renovation


Wurl Wood was a furniture production, restoration and repair shop owned and operated by the owner's father-in-law. Since Wurl Wood ceased production the building has gradually decomposed to the point where the concrete slabs, concrete block walls and their foundations are the only stable building components remaining.  The son-in-law, steeped in the history of the building and surrounding area, has retained much of the mill-working equipment and will, using the remaining building components, construct a new private residence, a smaller woodworking shop and an artist's studio for his and the family's use.


Dramatic clear spans are achieved by using structural insulated panels (SIPs) faced on the interior with birch plywood. Roof overhangs are designed to passively shelter glazing during the summer allowing occupants to open garage type glazed panels and operable windows rather than employ the building's air conditioning systems. Clerestories trace the entire perimeter of the building and will be glazed with a clear insulating polycarbonate plastic product. Interior walls are opaque only to the bottom of the clerestory. Demising between spaces at the clerestory level occurs only where necessary for privacy and is achieved by glazed panels thus allowing light from the clerestories to filter into every room and from all spaces enhance the feeling of a soaring floating roof plane. An open courtyard defined by the walls of the original elementary school links the shop and the living quarters. A new wood deck to the rear of the courtyard faces an especially beautiful view of the Unicoi Valley.

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