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Starting from Outside Architecture

Posted on Jun 4, 2013

For many couples, their dream home can begin before they even come to Riverbend. Sometimes, a family may have already begun working with an outside architect and are interested in including timber framing or it is suggested to them by their designer. Today we spoke with Project Manager, Tom Schrock, about how Riverbend works with outside architects in a collaborative effort to fulfill a client’s ideal timber frame home design.

timber frameTom Schrock, Project Manager

When we begin a project with an outside architect, most of the creative process is often done beforehand. However, in terms of timber frame design, it is a rare skill for a conventional architect to be able to draw the skeletons accurately. So when clients come to us with their architects, they are looking to us to not only complete these drawings but to help them determine what connections, wood species, and size would work best with their existing design.

Once we’ve determined the size, species, and style of the future home’s timber frame, we will use the architect’s existing drawings and include the timber framing so our shop can produce a properly fitted frame.

Like timber framing, structural insulated panels (SIPs) are another aspect of a Riverbend building system that the traditional architect may not have knowledge of. Being able to draw these panels is very technical, and knowing their wall and roof systems composition and capabilities is something that we have had years of experience doing. That being said, when clients come to us, creating skeletal drawings and SIP panel drawings for the home will usually go hand-in-hand.

SIPs and TF

Mark and Kerri’s home Building System – SIPs and Timber Skeleton

A recent project we’ve done for Michigan couple, Mark and Kerri, is a great example of our ability to collaborate with outside architects. Working with Jim Walters Creative Designs to create their second home, Mark and Kerri realized they wanted to include timber framing in the home as well. The couple, their architect, and their builder all came to Riverbend’s offices in Michigan to brainstorm with a Riverbend designer. While this was the architect’s first time designing a timber frame and SIPs home, after working with our experienced design team, the final design was fleshed out accurately and according to the clients wants. Now this project is nearing completion on the couple’s Rapid City property and the collaborative efforts of all parties can be seen in the home’s breathtaking look and layout.


Visit our website for more information on Riverbend’s Design Pathways and Design Process.

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