November 27, 2006
“The Epitome Of Gracious Green Living” (Oakland)
Okay, so it might be across the bay (Oakland Hills), but we’ve always had a thing for the integration of garage doors and living space. And we can’t help but feature a property that’s (self) described as “the epitome of gracious green living.” (Designed by Sallie Lang of Bliss Building and developed by Green Lane Development.)
∙ Listing: 7257 Skyline, Oakland Hills (3/5) – $2,600,000 [residentphotography]
First Published: November 27, 2006 8:15 AM
Comments from "Plugged In" Readers
I do adore the integration of those garage doors, but is this another McMansion in a tree hugger's clothing?
Posted by: Stina at November 27, 2006 11:06 AM
Based on a call to the agent, the property is listed for $2.6 mil.
Posted by: anonymous at November 27, 2006 5:58 PM
Oakland is still Oakland regardless of how nice the house might be.
Better off living in SF for that money. Oakland is for the thug life and those nasty Raiders fans
Posted by: Anonymous at November 27, 2006 7:49 PM
... "thug life" ? What a strange thing to say or maybe just a strange way of putting a rather superficial observation. I am beginning to think SF is bit too smug for its own good. Anway, the space looks pretty spectacular (besides the fact that SF is beginning to look better from that distance).
Oh, didn't I hear something about the 49ers leaving you?
Posted by: Anonymous at November 27, 2006 8:07 PM
Sorry Charley....thug life is limited to the flatlands...the rest of Oakland has parking, good restaurants and lots of greenery. Pretty much paradise in the Bay Area.
Posted by: jaded at November 27, 2006 9:14 PM
I wonder how attractive that room with the overhead doors will be when the doors are down, and enough hardware to reproduce the Brooklyn Bridge is suspended from the ceiling in your family room.
Sure looks cool when they're up, though. Couldn't they have just installed accordion type doors that fold off to the sides? Now THAT would befit a 2.6Mil house when the doors were open or shut. The garage door hardware look just wouldn't do it for me.
Posted by: tipster at November 27, 2006 9:27 PM
I think they could have used higher end sliding doors than those garage doors. There are tons of option for this type of use that look much better than having those ugly frames suspended from the ceiling.
As for Oakland, it is a dangerous place. Does it have a lot of really nice restaurants--yes--but you can easily get mugged or shot in front of any of them and you can rest assure they will never be solved and no one ever sees anything. (I live in Emeryville near West Oakland) and frequently go to the nice restaurants in the Easy Bay. That's not to say you always have to watch your back as we are the prey.
Posted by: Anonymous at November 27, 2006 10:14 PM
wow - there's something interesting here. I am curious if this "dangerous" element is a repurcussion of the unreality SF has created. It is worth a moment to consider this ... Is SF essentially unreal? Does the east bay compensate this with its brutal reality (flatlands) and its intellectual vivacity (berkeley) ? Then there's the trickling mediocrity of the pennisula (south of Sf).
But could this house represent a fluid and earnest approach to a clean and conscious building style? I may just go by and see for myself.
Posted by: Anonymous at November 28, 2006 8:15 AM
Saying "Oakland is still Oakland" is about as well-informed as saying "California is still California, and there's no way I'd live anywhere near South Central L.A.". Ever been up into the hills? I've visited friends in Oakland near downtown who have a barbed-wire back yard fences, and I've visited friends who live a ten minute drive up into the hills where the only danger is getting distracted by the magnificent views and smell of trees.
Posted by: sillyrabbit at November 28, 2006 9:28 AM
My favorite part is that I can FINALLY park my Hummer in my living room thanks to the garage doors.
Posted by: Dude at November 28, 2006 11:09 AM
Yes, living in the Oakland hills is very nice. The only problem is your house is essentially a hilltop fortress. Once you leave your hilltop castle you have to deal with the flatlands of Oakland. Unless of course, you have a helicopter.
Posted by: Anonymous at November 28, 2006 12:48 PM
In resonse to the very first comment, this is certainly not a McMansion in tree hugger's clothing. The builder is a good friend and she is very serious about building as green as possible. For example, all the trim wood is either FSC certified or local wood. Other woods used were chosen because they are responsibly harvested.
One should really come take a look for yourself. It's even better in person.
Posted by: JCT at November 29, 2006 11:27 AM
Posted by: Anonymous at November 29, 2006 11:50 AM
I am the designer and builder of the house. In response to the overhead door comments: I could have used accordian doors in those openings, but have had some trouble with them in the past. They have been fussy to get to work properly, and can be difficult to weatherproof well. Also, the overhead doors when up create a much more spacious and open interface with the outdoors. The room they are in is the family room, not the living room, so the space is informal. The room is quite large, and the track is actually not very obtrusive. The website, 7257skyline.com, can give you a better feel, and I believe has a photo of the doors when down. They are glass, so are quite nice in the closed position as well. Nothing can replace seeing it in the flesh, though, so I encourage you all to go check it out. And I'm happy to answer any questions.
Posted by: Sallie Lang at November 29, 2006 12:31 PM
Could you tell me more about the problems you had with the accordian doors? Did you research the ones that all slide back into a pocket? We are building a building in LA and were looking into using these types of doors.
The house is beautiful!
Posted by: Anonymous at November 30, 2006 12:22 PM
Shoot me an email. Let's chat about this off list. Sallielang@aol.com
Posted by: Sallie Lang at December 1, 2006 5:59 AM
There are several things to consider when installing doors in an extra wide opening. In my view, the main design considerations are, where are the doors when they are open, and how do they operate. The three most common solutions are accordian doors, overhead or roll-up doors, and sliding doors. Common sense will tell you that accordian doors have the most complex movements to operate the doors. Consequently, they will have the most parts and pieces to the hardware. More parts, more parts to break, malfunction or wear out. I haven't installed them in a few years, and they may have improved, but in my experience, they are fussy to install and fussy to get to operate well, and can be difficult to weatherproof. If I were to spec them today, I would buy the absolute best quality hardware and doors I could afford. Also, due to the complexity of them, they are going to cost more than overhead or sliding doors. Alot more. For the cost difference over sliders or overheads, they may not be the best design solution. But they are really cool, and are the perfect doors for some applications. Both sliders and and overhead doors have simpler hardware, and consequently, are easier to get to operate well.
Considerations for the sliders that go into a pocket are: how many doors are going into the pocket and can your wall thickness accomodate them. If not, you need to build out a section of wall to accomodate them, and how does that look? Also, for pocket doors, your header for the opening needs to span the opening plus the pocket. So the pocket is going to add at least three feet to your header span, which needs to be considered when sizing the headers. Also, you need to be sure you have room to the side of your opening for the pocket doors. Finally, the sliders, while they tend to operate well, can be tricky to weatherproof. In LA, I would not think that would be of much concern. I like sliders and use them alot. Overhead doors are the easiest to operate, and and are quick and easy to install. The seal well. The doors when open are above and out of the way. The downside, of course, as people have pointed out, it that the hardware is not fantastically attractive. Also, when open, you do have a door up over your head, so it helps to have a higher than average ceiling, and an attractive door. My reasons for using to overhead doors in this house were that I could weatherproof them well, they operate without problems and I could get the most glass and maximize the fantastic view.
Finally, any kind of doors will operate better and last longer with some sort of protective overhang above them.
I hope this long-winded blab on doors answered you question. If not, feel free to email me directly.
Posted by: Sallie Lang at December 1, 2006 3:42 PM
congratulations on such great design,
can I get a source for the overhead doors? approximate cost?
thank you, julienne
Posted by: julienne at February 25, 2007 9:58 AM
I want to comment on the opinions of Oakland lifestyle. The so called "dangerous flatlands" I have lived in Temescal for 10 years and granted years ago it was pretty bad. but alot has changed and the flatland neighborhoods are realy blossoming. I can walk to a BART Station, walk to cafes and when I walk my dogs around the neighborhood, I know everyone and people here say "hi" to you.
I love where I live!!! I can be on the freeway in 2 minutes. Try that in Berkeley with all its rutted out roads and not one signal light synchronized! Oakland has real neighborhoods and great restaurants. San Franciscans should try DonaTomas and Pizziolo,
in Temescal, A cote in Rockridge. Oakland also has a tremendous inventory of beautiful and historic architecture and old homes in the flatlands and west oakland. Oakland is like a Pitbull in way as its always given a bad rap.
Posted by: Elrod at July 17, 2007 11:13 AM
I absolutely love it , so upscale and taseful.
Just the look I invision for an upcoming project . I love maintaing the " garage " look while adding such style. I so dislike garage conversions that try to make it look like it wasn't a garage when it is still so obvious . So why not go with the " obvious " as you did with class and pride ?
I would like to know how is the insulation with the garage doors. What kind of insulation did you add ? Did you add a heating or cooling unit ?Are there any other photos available to view ? Did you work with a designer ? I'd appreciate any input you feel would be helpful.
Thank you for sharing a beautiful living space ! Michele
Posted by: michellle at September 16, 2007 8:33 PM
your post stated the obvious truth here.
way"too much information" followed (the other posts)
your very clear and direct observation.
Posted by: Stephen Bryant Shelley at October 13, 2007 6:04 PM
Oakland is still Oakland? Thug life? Hilarious... Have you been to Piedmont? Montclair? Crocker Highlands? These are hardly the neighborhoods of hardcore Raider fans.... Oakland is a nice vast city centrally located in the Bay Area with many different pockets of nice places. I am just waiting for the big correction coming to hit Oakland in coming 1-2 years as I plan to buy there.
Back to the garage-door house for $2.6M. Great property, and I'll bet it is stunning in person! Nice work, Sallie.
Posted by: D Gordon at December 8, 2007 1:41 AM