The owners of our Black Barn project were looking for a solution to house their car collection and outdoor equipment away from the main house—enter plans for the Berkshires Black Barn. While it needed to be large enough to fit 6 cars, it was important that the structure not feel like a monstrous garage, nor be too overdone.

Project Name: Berkshire’s Black Barn
Studio Name: JAM Architecture
Location: Berkshires, United States
Photography: Gieves Anderson
Project size: 3400
Completion date: 2019
Building levels: 1

Berkshire's Black Barn by JAM Architecture - Sheet1
Garden View ©Gieves Anderson

As the client comically stated, “I don’t want my cars to live better than I do.” Our design choices struck a balance by blending the building into its natural surroundings to serve as a more subtle complement to the Red Barn home a short walk away.

Berkshire's Black Barn by JAM Architecture - Sheet2
Garage ©Gieves Anderson

Taking cues from their main house, we utilized traditional barn elements both inside and out, but painted this barn black so that it is not as visible from the main house, especially in the winter once the leaves have fallen. Windows above each of the doors add visual interest to the façade and bring additional natural light into the interior when working with the doors closed. Warm copper light fixtures were chosen for the exterior to provide a nice contrast to the barn’s dark color.

Berkshire's Black Barn by JAM Architecture - Sheet3
Interior ©Gieves Anderson

The grounding element of the design is the sunken outdoor fire pit and patio, which provides a perfect way for the whole family to enjoy spending time at the barn. It also serves to soften the garage feel and give a true sense of place on the site. Dry stacked stone was chosen for the walls and fire pit to reflect the old walls seen in the area and give the space more character.

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