[Olson Kundig]

The owners of Chicken Point Cabin bought the waterfront property—located half an hour from their house in northern Idaho—in order to build a lakeside cabin. Their intent was to use the house year-round, but especially during the summer, when the weather can get oppressively hot. Their directive was simple: make the house as open to the water as possible. The design response to this challenge was as direct as the request: a large pivoting picture window on the water side that literally opens the house to the landscape.

A manual hand-crank opens the 20-by-30-foot window wall. Employing a counterbalance principle through a set of gears, like that of a bicycle, allows a minimal input of force to pivot the six-ton steel-and-glass window. Although the gizmo employs sophisticated mechanical engineering, the result is not unlike the opening of a tent flap, allowing fresh air and unimpeded views to enter the cabin.

A plywood loft containing the master suite is suspended into the concrete-block shell and overlooks the living space, while additional bedrooms and service spaces are saddlebags on the two sides of the main volume. Text description by the architects.

Source: www.olsonkundig.com
Photography by: Benjamin Benschneider