Little House on the Ferry


Little House on the Ferry
highlights from
Little house
on the ferry
ocated on an island in Penobscot Bay, Maine, this trio of seasonal
cabins connected by a series of cedar decks and walkways provides
a cozy yet private place for guests of the family who owns the
summer home next door. Built on piers, the three small structures
hover over what once was a granite quarry. In order to minimize the
impact of building on the delicate recovering vegetation of the quarry,
the cabins were constructed using black-spruce cross-laminated timber
(CLT) panels. Cut to the exact building form, the panels were used to
create each cabin’s floor, walls, and roof. They were prefabricated in
Mirror, mirror on the
floor. The homeowner
selected a mirrored
toe kick to give the
illusion that the Ikea
white laminate kitchen
cabinets float above the
floor. For durability and
even more shine, the
floor was painted with
silver-gray polyurethane
marine paint.
Good things come in threes. There is a total of 890 sq. ft. of living
space in the three cabins. The largest cabin measures 16 ft. by 26 ft. and
houses the living, kitchen, and dining areas. Each of the other two cabins
measures 12 ft. by 18 ft. and has a private bedroom and bathroom.
april/may 2016
A plan for chasing away the chills. With the
cabins intended for use only during the warmer
months, a vintage Preway fireplace provides heat
for the main cabin on cool days and evenings.
Quebec, then shipped via truck and ferry to the
island. ­Using prefab panels reduced the construction ­impact on the site, and the structures went
together over the course of a few days instead of
weeks. Because the panels also provided a finished
surface on the cabins’ interiors, interior work was
minimal. Locally sourced unfinished Eastern
white cedar was used for the exterior siding, trim,
and sliding exterior panels. The cabins’ standingseam metal roofs are painted dark gray.
Architect Riley Pratt, GO Logic, Belfast, Maine;
Builder C.W. Conway and Sons, Vinalhaven, Maine
CLT panels Nordic Structures, Montreal,
Engineering Bensonwood, Walpole, N.H.;
Photographs Trent Bell,
Snug no matter what the weather. Each cabin has sliding exterior panels
to protect the glass windows and doors when the cabins are closed for
the season, and from severe weather in the summer. When necessary,
electric-resistance heat in each bathroom warms the sleeping cabins.
april/may 2016