The vision for Terrazza’s innovative architecture and engineering was brought to life by a team of master builders, craftsmen and designers.
Unique architecture begins with a vision, and ends with the fulfilment of this vision by a team of experts. To truly bring a vision to life, it must be executed with precision.
The vision for Terrazza was to create a steel and concrete masterpiece of soaring architecture befitting of its seaside perch, and to anchor the home via innovative and forward thinking in order to be able to handle everything the earth throws its way.
Anchored by a 24-inch thick slab of concrete that stretches the entire south side of the house, Terrazza is one of very few homes built to full commercial seismic code. It was the first to ever have shock absorbers built into all non-concrete walls, which is now a commercial standard.
In the basement, the builders drilled deep into bedrock and laid 18 inches of pea stone under the foundation, providing a natural drainage system for any water coming through the tiered site. To ensure the firmest structural integrity, rebar was drilled into the bedrock in two-foot intervals, fastening the home firmly to the lot and providing further peace-of-mind. One of the most striking features of this basement is the exposed bedrock that has been integrated into the wine cellar and games room, a true master’s touch.
On the main level, the house is built on a body of concrete that extends from garage area to the dining room fireplace. Beyond that point, a system of wooden floor joists anchored to steel girders and concrete pillars acts as a versatile and ultra stable sub-structure for the wood and concrete sub-floors. This inventive system allows further adaptability in the future. Looking south, the bank of windows are constructed of tempered glass with a metal membrane, adding a further measure of safety.
The main floor features two incredible wood-burning fireplaces, a true rarity in Vancouver, as these are no longer permitted under building code. The fireplaces are fitted with angled steel that never allows smoke into the house, and reinforced by more than 20,000 pounds of concrete each. Both fireplaces employ natural gas for easy lighting. As the original owners say, there’s nothing quite like a natural wood fire.
When it came time to secure the final beams of this architectural masterpiece, there was less than ¼ inch of play along the entire length of the home, truly fulfilling the exacting standards laid out by the architect.