Larose-McCallum Architectes



story : design 2017-18 & completion 2018
location: Canton de Potton, Qc, Canada
program : Chalet
project manager : Marc-Antoine Larose & Alexandre McCallum
structure : Géniex


This small school, which also served as a church, was formerly located directly on the side of a rural road in the Township of Potton. When the road was paved and widened by the Ministère des transports du Québec in the early 2000s, the building was moved away from the road and placed on a reinforced concrete foundation. The annex could not be moved, so the foundation was poured to eventually be rebuilt behind the existing building. The owners were charmed by the unique opportunity to live in a 19th century historical building integrated in the vernacular tradition of the Eastern Townships. The existing building was renovated and the annex was rebuilt to transform the whole into a functional secondary home.

Traditionally, a schoolhouse is a single large open room with a flat ceiling and a wood stove in the back. In line with the original classroom design, the existing main floor remains completely open. It comprises the common spaces including the kitchen, the dining room and a large living room. The ceiling is removed to create a double height in the front and a large bay window is open to the south view. In the back, a mezzanine is created at the level of the existing ceiling joists under the attic.

The addition joins the existing at the perpendicular ridge and creates a simple play of volumes where the existing and the addition complement each other to form a coherent formal whole. The annex contains the resting areas including the master bedroom and a bathroom on the main floor. Upstairs, the space under the single-pitch roof comprises a reading room and a small bathroom. The staircase located under the junction of the roofs of the annex and the existing building gives access to the mezzanine above the kitchen and the meditation space. A large terrace is accessible from both volumes and extends the living space to the outside.