The Levine Residence is located on Malibu Road, a meandering street of closely spaced homes with side-yard setbacks typically set at 4 feet. Both the city of Malibu and the Coastal Commission limit the buildable envelope and seaward development in a complex non-related set of zoning ordinances. This results in a difficult balance of creating privacy while opening up views of the ocean. The site drops off steeply between the road and the sand. The wave up-rush comes to a point that is almost to the landward side of the site, requiring sea walls just a few feet from the street and enabling waves to rush under the house during surges.
The solution was to have the house with a frame of steel and curtain wall infill sit on a grid of concrete beams over concrete caissons drilled 30-40 feet into the bedrock below the beach. The corrosiveness of salt air at the ocean limits the number of materials one can use because of deterioration. Our design utilized concrete, steel, Argeton tile, and KalWall for their durability, corrosive resistance and environmental stability. In addition, the steel was treated with a special paint used on oil rigs to resist rust.