Town & Country, MO
Spencer Brickwork, Inc.
Architect: Dick Busch Architects
Asked by the owners to use his imagination to establish their new residence as a one-of-a-kind creation, the architect suggested an array of unusual features. Foremost perhaps was this cozy courtyard placed European-style on the residence's front elevation.
The mason contractor selected a beige-colored Harvest Mix stone for the project. He based his selection on the warm, informality of the stone's appearance, which provides the appropriate ambience for a family gathering place like the courtyard. He also factored in the high durability of stone masonry, a necessity for a high-use area.
Distinguished by a free form, W-shaped row of stone caps, the entrance to the courtyard is set adjacent to the home's main entryway. Inside the 14-ft x 20-ft. enclosure, a stone fireplace provides a warm highlight while an intricate water feature adorns the facing wall.
Construction of the courtyard presented some difficult problems for the mason contractor. First of all, the roof was already in place when the masonry crew began its work on the courtyard. The resulting tight workspace hindered the movement of both scaffolding and materials.
The masons also faced the daunting task of creating the symmetrical W-shaped feature, something they had never constructed before. To provide the necessary symmetry, the crew built a template covering half the wall. They then reversed the template to construct the remaining half.
Thanks to the warmth of masonry and a convention-breaking design, this informal courtyard is one of the many highlights of a most unique home.