Location: Venice, California

Project size: 4,500 square feet

Program: The project comprises three single-family houses, each on legally distinct parcel, and with its own identity. Two houses, X and Y, face the street, and a third, Z, is in the rear, adjacent to an alley.  The X House, designed as a live/work environment, enters into a ground level studio and a den/bedroom. The kitchen, dining, and living spaces are on the second level, while a master bedroom and bath occupy the entire top floor. In contrast, the Y House is a single-family residence, with the primary living spaces located on the ground floor.  The second level comprises the master bedroom; the top floor includes an additional bedroom and a studio/playroom. The Z House sits above its two-car garage and tandem carports for the other two houses. The front door is located on the second level facing the street, accessed by way of an exterior stair/ramp located in the slot between the other two houses. The Z House is an open plan, double-story loft space with perforated steel stairs to the upper floor and the roof.  Other than fixed baths on both levels and a kitchen on the middle level, the loft layout is flexible. Private roof gardens provide outdoor rooms for all three houses. 

Solution: Two 30-foot tall, L-shaped cement plaster walls organize the project and form an axial passageway from the street to the alley house.  The street-facing X and Y Houses are organized around spiraling switchback stairs, which eliminate the need for hallways and divide each floor plate into two clear zones. The interior of the Z house is screened from the south-facing alley by bamboo and a perforated corrugated screen façade.

Construction and materials: Exterior surface materials include bar grating over thermoplastic polyolefin roofing material on the X House, perforated anodized aluminum rain screen on the Y House, and perforated, corrugated zinc rain screen on the Z House, along with smooth cement plaster walls.  Each house contrasts refined elements and minimalist detailing with rough materials expressive of construction. Precise steel stairs and framing, stainless steel railings, mesh screens, sealed plaster interior walls, and manufactured storage are juxtaposed with raw elements such as exposed manufactured joists, plywood sheeting, concrete floors, and distressed tile.

Additional Information

Location: Venice, California

Completion date: June 2019

Owner: Mark Cigolle, Reid Cigolle, Kim Coleman



Cigolle X Coleman, 532 Grand Blvd, Venice CA 90291.  www.cxcarch.com


Personnel in architect's firm who should receive special credit:

Mark Cigolle, Reid Cigolle, Kim Coleman; project Architects


Architect of record:

Kim Coleman



Simpson Gumpertz & Heger Inc, Structural Engineer;

Harvey Goodman, Civil Engineer;

Geoconcepts, Geotechnical


General contractor:




Eric Staudenmaier



Structural System

Steel Stairs: Metalmorphosis


Exterior Cladding

Metal panels: McNichols, Rheinzink

Moisture barrier: Vapro-Shield



Other: GAF EverGuard TPO Membrane



Metal frame: Fleetwood



Skylights: Lane-Aire Manufacturing

Insulated-panel or plastic glazing: Moxie Surfaces



Sliding doors: Fleetwood

Industrial roll-up doors: Lawrence Doors


Interior Finishes

Cabinetwork and custom woodwork: Charles Gemeiner Cabinets

Kitchen cabinets: Bulthaup

Kitchen appliances: Miele

Built-In Wardrobes: Poliform

Storage System: Vitsoe

Paints and stains: Benjamin Moore

Floor and wall tile: Lunada Bay Tomei, California Series, Northstar, Walker Zanger 



Interior ambient lighting: Bruck, Edge

Downlights: Juno, Bruck Ledra

Exterior: BK Lighting

Dimming system or other lighting controls: RadioRA 2



Faucets: Watermark, Vola

Toilets: Duravit

Tubs, sinks: ADM, Duravit



Add any additional building components or special equipment that made a significant contribution to this project: Warm Floors Radiant Heating