Porch House
Columbus, MT
Completed 2013

High Plains Architects
2720 Minnesota Ave.
Billings, MT 59101

The Porch House sits perched overlooking a stretch of the Yellowstone River valley. With an expansive view of the majestic Beartooth Mountain Range and its close proximity to renowned fishing on Montana’s Stillwater River you have the beginnings of a great Montana retreat. This structural insulated panel (SIP) home effortlessly fuses its sustainable features with carefully executed design choices into a modest 1,200 square feet. The SIPs provide a robust, insulated envelope while maintaining optimal interior comfort with minimal effort during all seasons. A twenty foot vaulted ceiling and open loft plan aided by proper window and ceiling fan placement provide efficient cross and stack ventilation. A custom square spiral stair, hiding a wine cellar access at its base, opens onto a loft overlooking the vaulted living room through a glass railing with an apparent Nordic flare. The "porch" on the Porch House wraps 75% of the house affording unobstructed views in all directions. It is clad in rusted cold-rolled steel bands of varying widths with patterned steel "scales" at each gable end. The steel roof connects to a 3,600 gallon rainwater collection system in the crawlspace for site irrigation and added fire protection given the remote nature of the site. Though it is quite literally at the end of the road, the Porch House is the beginning of many new adventures for its owners.

Porch House
Columbus, MT
Completed 2013

High Plains Architects
2720 Minnesota Ave.
Billings, MT 59101

The Porch House sits perched overlooking a stretch of the Yellowstone River valley. With an expansive view of the majestic Beartooth Mountain Range and its close proximity to renowned fishing on Montana’s Stillwater River you have the beginnings of a great Montana retreat. This structural insulated panel (SIP) home effortlessly fuses its sustainable features with carefully executed design choices into a modest 1,200 square feet. The SIPs provide a robust, insulated envelope while maintaining optimal interior comfort with minimal effort during all seasons. A twenty foot vaulted ceiling and open loft plan aided by proper window and ceiling fan placement provide efficient cross and stack ventilation. A custom square spiral stair, hiding a wine cellar access at its base, opens onto a loft overlooking the vaulted living room through a glass railing with an apparent Nordic flare. The "porch" on the Porch House wraps 75% of the house affording unobstructed views in all directions. It is clad in rusted cold-rolled steel bands of varying widths with patterned steel "scales" at each gable end. The steel roof connects to a 3,600 gallon rainwater collection system in the crawlspace for site irrigation and added fire protection given the remote nature of the site. Though it is quite literally at the end of the road, the Porch House is the beginning of many new adventures for its owners.

How to Be an Architect

Architects must be licensed before they can practice as an architect or call themselves an architect. There are three main steps in becoming an architect: education, internship and examination.

  • Education: The Montana State University School of Architecture offers a Master of Architecture professional degree that is fully accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). In the United States, most state registration boards require a degree from an accredited professional degree program as a prerequisite.
  • Internship: Most state architectural registration boards require architectural graduates to complete an internship in order to become licensed.
  • Examination: All states require the completion of the Architect Registration Examination, in order to gain licensure within the 54 jurisdictions covered by the National Council of Architectural Registration Board (NCARB).


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