Perched on a bench at the base of the Crazy Mountains in Central Montana, the Nelson Residence
is a fusion of the clients’ interest in the architecture of the southwest with the altitude, latitude, and climate of Montana. The simple one story structure is constructed of energy conserving structural insulated panels and heated with an energy efficient radiant floor heating system. Passive solar design features include a south-facing living room that is bathed in sunlight in the winter but shaded in summer, as well as a south-facing porch warmed by the sun in cooler weather. The house is clad in custom fabricated rusted steel siding panels requiring no maintenance, grounding the building firmly within the colors and textures of the area. The house was embellished with an array of artisan objects crafted by the owners. A courtyard between the house and garage provides sheltered outdoor space with views of the surrounding razor-edged mountains.