Building a New House in Ojai and Ventura County

Building in the City of Ojai is a fairly straightforward process.  The town itself is quite small, only 4.4 miles, beyond those boundaries you are in the unincorporated area of  Ventura County – a bit more challenging building process.  Call us to help you navigate the building process.

Geography

Ojai is located at 34°26′57″N 119°14′48″W

The city is generally at 745 feet (227 m) above sea level.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.4 square miles (11 km2), of which only 0.35% is water, and the rest is land.

Ojai is situated in a small east-west valley, north of Ventura and east of Santa Barbara. It is approximately 15 miles (24 km) inland from the Pacific Ocean coast.

Since Ojai is lined up with an east-west mountain range, it is one of few towns in the world to have a “Pink Moment” occur as the sun is setting. The fading sunlight creates a brilliant shade of pink for several minutes on the Topatopa Bluffs, over 6,000 feet (1,800 m) above sea level at the east end of the Ojai Valley. Nordhoff Ridge, the western extension of the Topatopa Mountains, towers over the north side of the town and valley at more than 5,000 feet (1,500 m). Sulphur Mountain creates the southern ranges bounding the Ojai Valley, a little under 3,000 feet (910 m) in elevation. The Sulphur and Topatopa Mountains are part of the Transverse Ranges system.

The Ventura River flows through the Ventura River Valley, draining the mountains surrounding Ojai to the north and east and emptying into the Pacific Ocean at the city of Ventura. The Ventura River was once known for its steelhead fishing before Matilija Dam and Lake Casitas were constructed, eliminating habitat for this trout species.

The climate of Ojai is Mediterranean, characterized by hot, dry summers, sometimes exceeding 100 °F (38 °C), and mild winters, with lows at night sometimes below freezing. As is typical for much of coastal southern California, most precipitation falls in the form of rain between the months of October and April, with intervening dry summers.

Craftsman Kitchen Remodel – Santa Monica

by Otis Bradley

Project: Santa Monica – Craftsman Remodel

Architecture: Otis Bradley Company, Inc.
Builder: Otis Bradley Company, Inc.
Interior Design: Client with Otis Bradley Company, Inc.

Craftsman architecture is one of my favorites (I admit I have lots!).  I like the bold, strong, simple massing and the way the structural frame is exposed as finish detail.

Although the homes often look bold and strong, having been built at the turn of the Century, most Craftsman homes have inferior foundations.  Concrete was much different then – lacking metal reinforcement – and was typically much smaller than today’s foundations.   However this home had been completely lifted off its old foundation and a new one was installed underneath it !

The entire home was constructed of redwood – the good old stuff!  The 2×4’s, the mouldings and even the siding is all redwood.

Not a fancy craftsman home – I like to call this a “working craftsman.”  Good solid but basic detailing.

The home had also been “remuddled” over the years.  The kitchen cabinets were some kind of super cheap fiber board construction with no relationship to the style of the home.

After studying Craftsman furniture of the era like Stickley and others, we decided to go back to oak.  We installed new oak floors throughout the house and oak cabinets as well.  After looking at several different concept of Craftsman style ideas, we decided to go with a fairly straight forward wide frame and panel design.

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