The midcentury-modern home in Portland's West Hills looks out on to a view that's a verdant green wall by spring and summer, a commanding view of city and mountain by winter. Trouble was, the daylit basement, complete with swimming pool, lacked love for many years. By the time Portland firm Fieldwork Design inherited the space, it was a grim throwback to some of the 1970s' more misguided days: closed off from that outdoor wonderland by awkward columns and clunky doors, surrounded by off-putting and cluttered spaces. "We wanted to take the worst part and turn it into the best part," says FWD's Cornell Anderson. "You have this beautiful landscape outside, and the architecture was just in the way." The firm deleted the existing series of doors in favor of a single door, split down the middle. This change demanded a substantial structural change, as old columns disappeared and the ceiling raised subtly to create a space that flows into its outdoor surroundings. Inside, FWD adopted some of the materials present in the home's renovated upper story, but also wrapped the room in warm cedar to emphasize the connection to the forest outside.

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