Hatley by François Abbott: Natural Materials in A Multi-Generational House

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Located in Hatley, a small township in southern Quebec, this house courtesy of by François Abbott is a reformulation of traditional agricultural forms and materials, typical of the landscape where it stands: farms, stables, and sheds scattered over acres of pasture, orchards, and forests.

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This context has inspired the architect François Abbott to design this private home, where the spaces are immersed in the tranquility of the environment and at the same time offer the possibility of sharing evenings with family and friends.

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Structurally, the Hatley by François Abbott is defined by a few elements that also help to link the three volumes together: the continuous horizontal concrete foundation, the wooden lattice facades that surround the entire house and the galvanized steel gable roof, so typical of this agricultural scenario.

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Divided into three wings: teacher, children’s and community, the layout of each has been designed to make the most of the surrounding conditions based on their functions.

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The three volumes of equal height, rest on a raised concrete base and are surrounded by a wooden framework that gives them depth. In turn, each space supports a vertical seam metal roof at an angle of 50 °, sloped enough to let the snow fall.

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Located in the center of the distribution, the community wing is the largest volume of the house. Created to coexist, inhabit, cook, and share, the room has a wide sliding glass door facing the hill, which emphasizes the feeling of being located in height.

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Slightly smaller, the children’s wing is sunk one notch below ground level. With two rooms and a mezzanine, the space has its own entrance and an independent terrace, which allows greater autonomy.

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The master wing is the smallest volume in the house. Hidden and facing the outside, this section has a meditation room, which can be accessed by a narrow wooden staircase.

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Photography: James Brittain

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