Shed

1965 - 1985

Sea Ranch Condominium Complex, Sonoma, CA, 1965The Shed Style is easily identified by a juxtaposition of boxlike forms capped with single-sloped shed roofs facing a variety of directions. The style spread quickly through the United States after the construction of the Sea Ranch Lodge condominium complex in Sonoma County, California in 1965.  In the Architectural Record Magazines review of 1967 houses, six houses featured the new style.  Here in the Pacific Northwest the style was touted as a contemporary design appropriate for Northwest living.  The use of the style in the 1970s coincided with the energy crisis and some of the better examples employ passive-solar design elements.  Features such as south facing windows at the roofline (clearstory windows) paired with interior elements such as brick floors or rock walls which could collect and store heat, saved energy costs.

House & Garden Plans - 124 Best-Selling House Designs, 1978Exterior walls are usually covered with flush board siding, applied horizontally, vertically, or even diagonally to follow the lines of the shed roof.  Builder examples often used T1-11 siding, while high style examples are clad with cedar shingles. The junctions of the roofs and walls are smooth and simple, with little or no overhang.  Most Shed Style buildings are 1 to 1½ stories tall.  Entrances are often recessed and obscured from the street and windows tend to be a variety of sizes and shapes.  Long narrow windows installed vertically or horizontally are common, as well as windows that are angled to follow the slope of the roof line.

The style’s popularity peaked in the 1970s, when it was commonly used for houses, apartment complexes, vacation cottages, schools and small office buildings.  By the mid 1980s, the use of the style in urban areas dwindled, mainly due to the high maintenance requirements of the wooden exteriors.

Washington State Examples

House
Mercer Island, c.1975
Strip Commercial Block
Spokane, c.1983
J Street Medical Clinic
Tacoma, 1975
   
Office Building
Lacey, c.1983
House
Tacoma, c.1980
House
Olympia, c.1978
   
House
Seattle, c.1985
House
Spokane, c.1978
House
Kennewick, c.1983


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Feb
25
2017