A house by a lake... a heart-felt family home... a refuge from the bitter winter... these are the images for this 5000 sq. ft. residence on Chestermere Lake just east of Calgary, AB. The program includes a living/ dining/ kitchen area, office, children's bedroom and guest suite on the main floor. Master bedroom, bath, exercise room and sitting mezzanine are located on the upper floor. These requirements are augmented with a hobby-car display, a three-car garage and basement workshop/ mechanical space. The linear layout allows for the development of a gallery- with the car "showroom" on one side and a storage/art display wall on the other. The layout of the house is determined by the long, narrow lot and the desire to create a variety of exterior and interior spaces. The south-facing entry courtyard, with it's pergola and pond, will offer a contrast to the surrounding prairie landscape. The essence of the house is one of well-defined structure that is simultaneously inviting and sheltering. Massive stone piers with steel capitals hold log beams that in turn support exposed timber upper floor and roof framing. The deep-eaved, layered roofs form a set of over-lapping gables facing the lake. Through these elements the house engages the landscape in a powerful and grounding manner. The exterior and interior wall finishes are of the same natural fir planking material. The floor, the upper floor structure and the roof framing are also fir. This establishes a rich, warm, inviting tone to the interior. The stone piers are to be constructed with local granite. The use of these natural materials both inside and out gives the building a sense of integrity and wholeness that our firm strives to achieve. Stained glass bands at the gable ends of the house provide colour and warmth. The metal pier capitals and rafter connectors are shaped to express their role in the structure and to enhance the natural texture of adjoining stone and wood. Heating is provided by a radiant/ topping system. Except for the double-glazed stained glass bands, the windows are comprised of triple-glazed argon-filled units.