The barn is the main building at WAS. Documentation confirms it was built prior to 1935 but we don't have an exact date for its construction. The adaptive reuse of the barn began 25 years ago with the start of the WAS. However, its potential is still largely unrealized. The redevelopment of the barn is intended to align with the vision of WAS. The barn project was launched in earnest with Homeboat and followed up with Project Artists' Seth Andrews and Devin Walker. In 2020, Sam Nordmeyer joined the project team. The adaptive reuse of the barn is for a flexible/live work space and the place can be inhabited for living "close to the land." Guiding design directives include relying materials that are reclaimed, local, or from the site itself. Removed materials will find another life if possible and new assemblies are designed for future disassembly and adaptation. The redesign is imagined as a part of the continuous life of the land.
(left) The barn in 1995 and (right) The barn in January 2019.
The barn pre-1994. The barn has been used heavily in keeping livestock for many years. The larger overhead door to the loft had been left open and increased exposure to the interior. The west side had a broken concrete floor and the south side concrete flooring tiered for milking. Small grain storage rooms had been used for keeping livestock. The original loft had mostly been removed. The roof shingles were in generally poor condition leading to deterioration of the sheathing below but the rafters were in good condition.
Design Rebuild - Work in progress 2019 -
South side extension WIP start of work day 9/28/21
Early and late views of south side extension WIP (9/21)
Corten weathering (producing protective rusted patina) and drip edge detail with column bracket on natural log.
Early morning east extension looking out from barn.
Evening view of east side extension (porch)
South side extension framing WIP.
Under the corten
Perforated, corrugated corten sheets installed on east side extension. The extension is primarily a protective "visor" for the east side with work space available. It also is a connector between structure and the landscape. It can also be thought of as a porch space but its really not intended for gathering more as a welcoming or transitional element.
East side porch
Interior view looking out at east side porch mid-morning August.
Natural log columns on east side porch.
View looking south
Footing in place for back extension (deck) and with a few framing boards loosely placed pre-install 08/03/21
Footings dug with array of tools, ground barrier and light gravel at the south side extension 07/21.
Corten corrugated steel panel during weathering process (about 3wks) and the deck framing being bolted to the foundation and footings (08/01/21)
WIP on east side extension. Welded metal supports top and bottom connect the natural logs (reclaimed) columns to the foots and roof. Floor\deck laid out loosely showing metal bracket sliding in gap between boards. 07/02/21
(left) Stair mock-up testing out metal frame (right) Tim Tack stair frame welding jig ready for production work. 07/02/21
Tim Tack and Seth Andrews working on welding shop project 6/18/21.
Prep work has been on-going with limited new construction but soonish we will shift gears again 6/7/21
North side door by Seth 6/7/21
Work "closet" updated 5/30/21.
5/7/21 - Reworking a door on the northside, the existing frames are usually a mix of worn out and rotted wood with some of it amazing intact and durable. The edge of the frame board sliced to create new surface shows the quality of the wood after about 90 years in place. The header is well worn and damaged on the outside but most of the board is still in good shape.
04/25/21 - New saw stand set up as prep work is under way again.
Mocking up shelving wall 12/10/20
The router sled is ready to go... (the rails are temporary) but will be able to plane/surface shortly on some level.
Tower with stair foreground leading back to south room (studio set-up a the moment) 11/21/20
(left) View from small platform back to the work area and then looking other direction (right) to the tower.
The divider wall creates a mystery space or "afterhours entrance"
11/12/20 (Top uncharred pine board, middle charred one side, lower charred both sides) The charring of wood shrinks and compacts the cell helping it resist rot and fire. The bending of the wood in middle image is due to the shrinkage on the burn side constricting its length.
Roller door installed - 10/18/20
(left) Interior view of "mini-attic" ventilation. (right) exterior vent with new frame at the roof peak 10/11/20
Shou sugi ban (焼杉板 rolling door detail - 10/11/20
The roof in progress in the loft loft or extra sleeping area. We have a tiny attic area at the peak to finish that is our work around for going inside out and not rehashing the current exterior roof. 09/13/20
Roller door tracks after cleaning, stripping and blackening
(left) Roller door hardware after first cleaning and stripping and (right) after final stripping awaiting final finish. The hardware is from a 1942 corn crib in central Iowa (roughly same time as our crib was built). The cleaning and stripping is almost all mechanical. Strippers and derusting products can work but most often fall quite short to the goal. The first of the hardware will be used for the larger (new) central door in the rebuild.
Framing the "Loft loft" a sort of "Crow's nest" in which one could escape into the peak of the barn. View also shows sister'd rafters in the main space with some insulation going in. 07/30/20
The lumber in of the barn is mostly from the Carlisle Lumber Company of Onalaska, Washington. It was successful mid-sized company operating from 1886 to 1938. It had a major success providing lumber for the 1893 Chicago World's Fair. "Legend has it Onalaska’s name comes from an Aleut word meaning “dwelling together harmoniously.'" However, the truth is somewhat mysterious and mixed to about how places were named . But the version of Onalaska in Washington was created by William Carlisle as a company town. The town still exists with just the great smokestack remaining from the mill next to Carlisle Lake. In 1903 the Carlisle reformed with his partner, George Pennell to create the Carlisle-Pennell Lumber company. In 1924, Pennell's and other interests had been bought out by the Carlisle family and the company was reestablished as the Carlisle Lumber Co.
Carilisle Lake during the operation of the lumber company.
Roof ventilation along lower roofline. The venting is a little unusual for due to the existing conditions but we will protect exterior openings 07/24/20
07/24/20 Shou Sugi Ban siding up on the north wall (interior). Ban preserves wood against insects, rot, and fire.
WIP 07/17/20 - A lot of work goes into the tightness of connections between new and old.
07/02/20 View from loft to stair tower (WIP)
06/30/20 - Sam Nordmeyer is installing new roof sheathing with air gap below the existing roof. Additional rafters will be added to increase room for insulation. The sheathing is ForceField (patent pending) sheathing with building paper pre-attached allowing for the inside out process to flow. The threshold of the stair tower is being worked on by Seth. Knee brace supports have been removed and framing has been restructured from single members to composite structures. The overhead is now a functional box beam.
Project Artist - Seth Andrews Working on frame of West side double (swinging) barn door.
(East side) Double door original style now sealed 06/30/20
06/21/20 An original swinging door (roughly 85-100 years old) and a 2020 version newly installed. The new door will have additional seals so no light will be coming through but the tightness fit of the doors is evident. All the swinging doors will be replaced. Project Artist Seth Andrews
An accidental "shelving" area is now being considered to become an actual shelving area. The ideal situation of the design coming out of the circumstances. East wall, door frame area 06/17/20
Tree cut... on the left is a completed log (quite a bit smaller than the new tree cut) and sort of how this one should turn out as well finish wise.
Dead tree (still not settled on species) along the creek is going to be cut out for use in rebuild project stairs - 05/31/20
Work in cue.
05/23/20 - South wall openings with exterior (rainscreen). "Loft, loft" ... upper level to be installed just below upper windows (part way across)
05/23/20 - View form lower south loft window - fenced in (raspberries) mixed apples to the right, elderberry, plum, and blueberry in front of bur oak heading to the bee yard.
03/01/20 Project re-emerges after winter hiatus. New window openings cut in loft space. with Seth.
New rough opening from loft 11/24/19
WIP - 11/24/19
The roof extension will be covered with corrugated fiberglass sheets.
The east wall with windows being added. 09/08/19 - Although they lack conventional window operation they are peg with wingnuts so to easily removed for short-term flexibility but also one future scenario is to reuse them in cold frames.
Natural log (post) part of building collection for staircase and perhaps more design applications. The post is roughly 9" dia. and 8 feet tall.
South end slide door installed (details to be resolved) 08/29/19
Work in progress... grinding reclaimed oak posts 08/25/19
Work in progress 08/16/19 - framework of extension connecting first and second floors
Roller door hardware - left (final cleaning/rust removal) right (resting on door - first cleaning complete)
08/09/19 (bottom) New side rolling door for south end in fabrication. The frame is treated lumber and local hickory. The hickory is strong and dense wood for the main frame structure. The exterior siding is local pine and is face down and covered with Block-IT building wrap for water and vapor barrier. The interior is then filled with two layers of AP foil faced insulation for R-10. The interior facing side of pine lap joint siding is added with rough sawn pine edge trim. Hardware will be added to hang the door. The main challenge now is the handling the weight of the door and overall size at 8 feet by 6' 6". (image below is where the door will be installed after the frame is rebuilt))
08/06/19 - Southeast corner of the barn showing progress on roof extension and east wall reconstruction. The left edge large roller door waiting to be replaced.
Reclaimed posts repurposed. These site harvested natural log posts (Chinkapin Oak) were used in the barn to create an alley way. We removed them in 1994 and stored them for potential future use. They are being used just outside the east side of the barn. Old nails and staples have been left in the posts.