Property Type: Residential
Neighborhood: North End  |  County: Ada  |  Building Status: Private  |  Architectural Style: Contemporary
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The hills of Boise yield very upscale and impressive homes. Perhaps the most eye-catching and modern of these is the Kreder Overton house. Appearing like something straight out of a magazine for modern homes and style, this residence is one of a kind in Boise, inspiring jealously and curiosity. Not only is its exterior modern and alluring however. The interior accrues elegance and further modernism. Unlike many other homes of the magnitude of beauty, The Kreder Overton home is as practical as a home can get; maximum beauty with maximum practicality.

When one first stumbles upon the Kreder Overton house, a sense of beauty and rapture descends upon them. The exterior of the residence is modern to the point of being the poster-child for contemporary architecture. The home is designed like a bunch of boxes on top and crashing into each other, each box made of a separate material, the hallmark of modern buildings. The first and most dominant material is metal. Metal is almost always utilized in modern architecture, and the Kreder house is no exception. The metal is broken up by evenly space ridges that break up the surface and add vertical lines to the structure, making it appear to stretch upwards.

The second material is custom German paneling. This paneling is broken up into many perfectly proportioned squares that are bolted to the house with an obvious screw in each corner, giving the paneling a very industrial look. The paneling also appears to be coming out at the observer. The third material is unfinished wood. Another very industrial material to use in modern housing, unfinished wood creates a sort of bond to the surrounding hills. The wood is arranged in a horizontal pattern that makes the wooded part of the house stretch sideways. The contrast created by the vertical lines in the metal, combined with the vertical and horizontal lines in the paneling, and the horizontal lines in the wood, create a clearer distinction where the boxes come together, and a unique pattern crafted by smaller patterns. These patterns along with the boxes arranged in a way that appears as if they are colliding, creates movement that is rarely seen in other houses.
Another material utilized in the Kreder home, is concrete. Not a material in the boxes that make up the house, but as the foundation, the surrounding patios, and floors. A material the designer loves to work with, concrete is used quite frequently and in different roles and patterns. For example, wood boards were used to form the concrete in the foundation, and left a distinct mark on the concrete, which closely resembles and uses the same patterns seen in wood. Glass is also a huge material in modern architecture, and certainly isn’t left out of the Kreder home. Every box in the house has a glass window of some sort, be it a large sun window or a small window to let in air. The Kreder strikes a perfect harmony between grossly different materials, insane arrangement of boxes, and absolute beauty.

The interior of the Kreder Overton Residence reflects that of the exterior and that is a very contemporary style of architecture. As one walks into the house they will observe all the windows in the house. The windows constructed so that throughout the day the house is getting sunlight and heat, Making it so that in the winter the heat only comes on in the house during the night. The entrance to the house is wood floors, paralleling the outside of the house. The main floors of the house are made of cement giving it a very warehouse-y feeling to it. The cement, although not being a very warm welcome is very easy to manage and clean up especially with two dogs living there. In the winter the floors obtain a good amount of heat from the sun, again being energy efficient.
The kitchen reflects a European style kitchen, being very compact in size but grand in production. The cabinets are free suspending into the wall, which fold out onto the counter of the kitchen hiding the mess of the kitchen. The dishwasher, unlike most American houses is up higher than the stove due to the overuse of the dishwasher and minimal use of the stove. The main room of the house is extended three months of the year by a 20 foot sliding glass door that separates the inside family room with outside pool area. The modern of the home makes for a very cold and not homely feeling to the house, but in this house they incorporated warm colors and soothing paintings to bring back some of that homey feeling to the house. As stated before, the interior reflects the exterior as being very modern, but also maximal practicality and easy to maintain.

Not only does the Kreder House have maximum beauty, but maximum practicality. When a home or building presents so much beauty on the interior and exterior, the practicality of the home or building is often left out. For example the Simplot Home is in a perfect location with beautiful exterior and interior but being such a pain to maintain the family up and left it to the state to take care of all the upkeep and renovations. The Kreder house is different because it was built with practicality as the primary goal to achieve for the home. The exterior with the unfinished wood, German panels, and metal siding require for no upkeep and cleaning for the residents of the house. The windows positioned to let in maximum sunlight and heat, drastically decreasing the heat need during the winter. Unlike most houses that utilize carpet for comfort and beauty, the cement makes for a very simplistic clean, especially since the pool area is part of the living area through the 20 foot sliding glass door. Concrete floors also conduct a mass amount of heat making for a very warm walking space. All space within the house is utilized, for examples the kitchen maximizing space with the free suspending cabinets hanging in the wall and the garden underneath the house.

The structure of the house being influenced off of practicality and the size of the lot the house could get built on. The roof being made up of rocks gathers up all the rainwater into drains and that water is stored later for irrigation for garden and the lot. The retractable glass windows lets fresh air come into the house minimizing cool air in the summertime, although this is the biggest demand for the house. Maintenance and practicality were a very contributing factor to the design of the house, although not very clear always to the naked eye.

The Kreder home champions contemporary architecture in all aspects. Maximum beauty and maximum practicality are a unique harmony that is rarely seen, even in the most iconic and desirable of modern houses. Perhaps the most architecturally stunning home in Boise, it is also among the most practical. The Kreder residence sets a high bar of ingenuity and design. This home will likely be the unsung gem of Boise homes for some time to come.

Source: Kreder Overton Family