It was the project of a lifetime, and Sacramento-based home builder
John Deterding approached it with his usual care for the land
and reverence for his clients.
The Rumsey Band of Wintun Indians, owners and operators
of the Cache Creek Casino Resort located 50 miles northwest of
Sacramento, approached John about designing and building a multi-generational
housing village on Indian land near the casino. The development
had to reflect the Tribe’s proud heritage and speak to its
great hope for the future.
The project was unique and difficult: how to tie together 18 architecturally
distinctive homes and eight townhouses in the beautiful and growing
Capay Valley. The Tribe wanted the homes to be multi-generational,
with minimal impact on its beloved environment.
John turned to friend and innovative designer Brent Smith who,
as a close friend once put it, “truly believed that we were
here to transform matter into spirit and touch the soul.”
Brent had never designed a house that didn’t fit the owner’s
needs or spirit, and this project was no exception.
The first challenge was to win the trust of the
small tribe. After several months of research and meetings with
tribal leaders, the two men came up with a village plan that encourages
neighbors to interact and enable families to strengthen and deepen
their community relationships.