ARCHITECTURAL GUIDELINES FOR THE
NORTH PACIFIC PROVINCE
The public architecture of the forest can be of
a scale appropriate to the powerful scale of the
trees and the masses of the mountains, of a
construction durable enough to survive years of
intense use, and yet possessing a finish and
subtlety of design that stimulate the human
eye and imagination.
Leland M. Roth, architectural historian
Place structures at the edge of existing
clearings. This preserves views and habitat,
avoids the need to clear vegetation, and
creates opportunities for sun and shade
as needed seasonally.
Make work complexes into building
compounds connected by covered walkways.
Site to catch the breezes necessary to
mitigate the bug problem in Alaska.
Shield structures with plantings on the
north and west sides in areas with
Manage vegetation near structures; plantings
can become overgrown and block views.
Figure of facilities and improvements subordinate to landscape features. Priority is given to preserving views by placing buildings away from views.
Figure of buildings concentrated away from riparian and wildlife migration zones.
Figure of a building carefully placed within the edges of a clearing.
Figure of a building sited in an existing clearing and open to receive solar rays from the south.
Figure of the building zone separated from the riparian zone with a landscape buffer.
Figure of a building compound with covered walkways between buildings.
MASSING AND SCALE
Diminish apparent mass of larger buildings by
creating wings or compounds of connected
Use building materials in scale (for example,
oversized stone and timbers) in massive forests.
Figure of an inappropriate single building suggests a buildings mass should be a collection of smaller elements.
Figure of a stone building in a rugged terrain and building elements that have the appropriate mass.
Figure of buildings that complement the scale of their surroundings.
Figure suggests that a massive scale landscape allows for larger and more massive buildings.
Figure suggests that a lesser-scale landscape allows for smaller scale and massing.
Complement the provinces dramatic landscape
while reducing wear and tear on buildings by
using a strong stone base. The base should
appear anchored to the ground and comprise
a major portion of the wall.
Use battered stone rock when possible
(although good-quality building stone may not
be available in Alaska).
Float buildings and pathways over landscape
on pilings or piers in tidal zones and other
Use a concrete base if it is skillfully textured
Figure of a sign on a strong wood beam rather than a less sturdy pole.
Figure of a building base used to protect wall from snow.
Figure of a strong, battered stone base at an overlook.
Design walls that appear to be growing from
Use both vertical and horizontal wall textures;
however, do not mix within one wall.
Figure of a building with wall areas smaller than its base and roof.
WINDOWS AND OPENINGS
Make windows large to take in views, warmth,
and precious sunlight.
Protect entrances from driving rain and snow by
including porches and vestibules when possible.
Particularly in Alaska, a vestibule provides a
valuable airlock and a place to remove rain gear,
to stack firewood, or to let dogs sleep. An arctic
variation turns the entry 90 degrees from the
building to keep the indoors warm and dry.
Avoid extensive horizontal bands of windows.
Follow historical precedent and scale by using
Do not place windows in corners.
Minimize northside entries and maximize
Keep overhangs shorter on south side of
building to maximize daylighting.
Use gable-end entries, but leave gables open
to bring light into building.
Figure of a building with windows maximized, especially to the south and southeast and windows to the north minimized.
Figure of airlock vestibule that is especially appropriate in Alaska.
Figures of protected entries:
· Extruded gable porch
· Continuous eave porch
· Added gable porch, and
· Covered entry porch NORTH
Design the roof so that it dominates the
architectural composition, except in warm
Design roof pitch to range from 6:12 to 12:12;
use lower pitches in warm California climates.
Keep roof shapes simple. Complex shapes
create valleys that trap snow, creating
Use gable and shed roof types if desired.
Use hip roofs for coastal areas or as shelters.
Avoid use of flat roofs and gambrel roofs.
Use gutters in rainy maritime climate but not
in heavy snow areas.
Use a steeper pitch with shorter overhangs in
areas with heavy snows.
Avoid multiple roof forms that may shed snow onto other roofs.
Figures of suggested roofs include a simple hipped roof and roofs that dominate the building.
Figures of roof structures suggest avoiding:
· Eave soffits
· Unprotected rafter tails. It is best to cover rafter tails.
Other suggestions for roofs:
Keep gables open to bring in sunlight.
Use shed or gable type dormers.
Use eaves that have heavy bargeboards.
Expose rafters, but protect rafter tails
from the elements by not extending them
beyond the roofing.
Avoid skylights when possible, or place
them near the ridgeline.
Figures with suggestions for various climatic regions:
In the Eastern areas concern is for the sun: Use overhangs on south and west for shading.
In the Mountain areas concern is for the snow:
Use steep pitch, less overhangs, and no gutters.
In the Maritime Coastal areas concern is for the rain: Use gutters, less pitch, and broad overhangs.
Design structure to look solid and substantial.
Use exposed structure, such as trusses and
post-and-beam, for both interior and exterior.
Avoid lightweight, flimsy tables and site
Figure of a pavilion that is an exposed substantial structure.
Celebrate the use of wood as a symbol and
the most significant resource of the province.
Match the texture of materials to the scale
of the setting. For example, in beachfront
settings, use narrow siding to match the
texture of grass and sand; do not use
boulders or massive timbers.
Use cedar shakes; however, they may be
difficult to obtain and maintain.
Use standing-seam metal and oxidizing steel
roofs in dark tones.
Use patterned asphalt shingles.
Avoid intrinsically bright, shiny, light-colored
Avoid slate or Spanish-tile roofs.
Figures demonstrating the use of materials:
Members clustered together to increase massive expression
Steps and site wall are assembled with natural, not overly refined materials.
Feature existing natural materials such as rocks and trees.
Emphasize muted earth tones such as beige,
brown, tan, and ochre.
Keep values in the medium range in response to
gray skies in northern areas.
Use darker values in southern areas.
Use turquoise in Alaska as it reflects the color
of water, ice, and snow. Native American accent
colors are aqua, red, and black.
Use weathered blue and gray colors to match
the fog and gray sky in seaside settings.
Make urban structures more colorful with
pastels and strong accent colors for trim.
Avoid dark colors indoors. Make interiors light
and reflective to create a light, airy
Use dark colors for metal roofsgreen, black,
or brown, or dark blue in maritime areas.