Imagine Building a Home in 30 Days that Lasts 300 Years.
We look to the past for inspiration—from the 300-year-old post-and-beam homes that still surround us here in New England, to timber frame homes in Germany that have lasted for 700 years.
In the mid-1970s, we built the first timber frame home that had been raised in New Hampshire in 60 years. Because we decided to pre-fabricate the structural components in the controlled conditions of our shop, we had to pioneer processes for precisely laying out and cutting the timber joinery in order to ensure that the pieces would fit together on site. We soon realized that we had re-discovered a compelling structural system, but it was only with our subsequent development of highly-insulating wall and roof panels that we felt we were on to something potentially revolutionary.
In the mid-nineties, we began to synthesize the Open Built® design and construction principles which continue to provide an intellectual and practical foundation for our technical innovations. Separating a building’s mechanical systems from its structure and skin—a fundamental tenet of Open Building—helps to ensure the long-term viability of the structure. And we have become ever more convinced that creating buildings which are beautiful is one of the best ways to ensure their longevity, because beautiful buildings are easy to love, and buildings that are loved tend to be well-maintained.
Over the years, we have continued to develop our processes and products —fine tuning our processes through continuous improvement, infusing our construction detailing with the latest building science research, and incorporating the most advanced and sustainable materials into our homes. We still love wood and incorporate it visibly into our homes, but these days, in addition to using traditional timbers, we also take advantage of engineered wood products such as I-joists and glulams. These engineered wood products maximize the inherent structural integrity, dimensional stability and long-term reliability of wood, while optimizing the yield of our forests. Our buildings are better than ever, with even more efficient use of wood.