Rising River Custom Float Home – Afloat with Style
Floating homes – dwellings permanently moored on shorelines around the world – are making a stylish statement. Amsterdam, Seattle and San Francisco are a few cities noted for their unique floating home communities.
Admirers of homes in these idyllic communities, when John de Waal and Shelley Whitlock planned their float home, they had many inspired ideas of their own. Both wanted an open concept plan with a loft bedroom that gave them a spectacular view of British Columbia’s Fraser River. John wanted the outdoor deck of their Rising River home to be designed on an angle so it resembled the deck on a boat. (A skilled machinist, John would later construct the custom railing himself out of tempered glass and aluminum.) Shelley, an antique collector, wanted a kitchen that faced the water with appliances and finishes that had a nostalgic feel. As a result, their float home’s kitchen was designed to accommodate her fine china, as well as state-of-the-art Heartland® appliances.
Matt Corbet, Linwood Sales and Design Consultant in Delta, BC, worked closely with the couple to incorporate their wish list into a 1,464 sq. ft. dream on the water. “The weight of the overall structure is the biggest consideration when designing a float home,” says Matt. “The engineering is delicate in that you have to carefully coordinate the engineering drawings with the proper marine engineering specifications to ensure the home works with the design of the float.” He also adds that, in the very early planning stages, it is key to observe the bylaws of the local float development. Matt – who is now working with the Linwood engineering team to design his fifth float home – says Linwood is the ideal company to design these structures since Linwood packages are completely customized to meet each homeowner’s needs.
The materials used in John and Shelley’s float home are the same structural materials as used in Linwood home packages built on land. Their float home package included hi-line lumber, Western Red Cedar, glu-lam Douglas Fir beams, 30-year fiberglass shingles, and energy-efficient windows and doors. Builder Alex Piso of Piso Homes in Delta, BC, then constructed the Rising River structural package on land. All interior work such as electrical, plumbing, heating, drywall, flooring, paint, stain and trim were in place before the home was launched on its float and taken to its mooring spot by tugboat. “Even the home’s large dining room chandelier was installed and secured very carefully so it would be intact after the launch,” says Matt.
With respect to design style, Matt adds, “The sky is the limit. We’re now working on a float home with an elevator and third story observation deck. Given Linwood’s engineering and design expertise, we can deliver beautiful homes on land – and on water.”