Menlo Park Townhouse-Midcentury Reimagined

Architect / Firm: John Lum Architecture, Inc.

Awards:    Year:    Entry Categories:

Awards:    Year:    Entry Categories:

John Lum Architecture, Inc.

3246 17th Street
San Francisco California 94110

Architectural Firm


Project Location: 139 Stone Pine Lane, Menlo Park, CA 94025
Completion Date:

This radical remodel of an Eichler-era townhouse, consisted of restructuring the existing floor plan and replacing it with a dynamic, open, modern-loft space.  A new sky-lit, centrally-located, open-steel staircase bisects the interior and floods the formerly dark space with natural light.  Relocating the staircase allows direct access from the entry to the living room while providing an unimpeded view of the trees in the backyard beyond.

The formerly closed-off kitchen and dining room, located up half a level, look down on the formerly isolated (and rarely-used) living room, integrating the living experience that was formerly disconnected. The kitchen was completely gutted and expanded and now has become the center of the house for the client, who is a gourmet chef, and enjoy throwing dinner parties for her friends.

The staircase, a dynamic sculptural element, continues to the third floor, connecting the master bedroom suite, which has been relocated to the rear, to two front bedrooms via a dramatic aluminum-grated landing/bridge.  Two bathrooms and a new laundry room complete this floor.

The rather pedestrian-level exterior was re-clad in vertical cedar, galvalume, and steel-troweled stucco, giving a dramatic facelift, recalling the mid-century providence but upping the architectural language to a more refined palette.

Thermal comfort had been a challenge for the owner due to the dilapidated condtion of the building.  Single-paned wood windows, no insulation, dryrotted siding, and an antiquated FAU system made a majority of the house either too drafty in the winter or too hot in the summer.

By using passive heating and cooling techniques with the installation of the large operable skylight in the middle of the house and insulation, the interior environment requires no active cooling or heating since completed. Other sustainable elements used were radiant heat with high efficiency water heating and solar thermal components, thermally broken, dual-glazed doors and windows, formaldehyde-free cabinetry, and low-VOC paint.

Photographer: Paul Dyer Photography

General Contractor: Pascon Building Contractors, Paul Scola

Structural Engineer: Hohbach-Lewin, Inc., Doug Hohbach

Interior Designer: Mansfield + O'Neil Interior Design, Tiffany Mansfield and Lisa O'Neil

Lighting Designer: David Scott Lighting, Scott Dumas



  • Kat
    February 10, 2017

    Fantastic! K

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