The Eel’s Nest is a small modern house in Los Angeles, California built on a steep and tiny lot of 15′ by 52′ (about 4.6 m by 15.8 m). It’s not uncommon to find rowhouses built on similarly-sized lots in some North American cities, but lots that small are extremely rare in Los Angeles. The name “Eel’s Nest” comes from the term used in Japan to describe very narrow building lots.
As the property is located in a neighborhood that is starting to densify with townhouses and small apartment buildings, architect Simon Storey of Anonymous Architects applied to the city for planning permission to build an extra story in height. With permission granted, the architect designed a house that stretches vertically and from lot line to lot line, achieving the maximum possible floor area. It has 960 ft2 (89.2 m2) of space divided over two floors, plus a garage tucked below. The lack of side setbacks did necessitate the use of a fire-rated exterior finish, for which Storey chose cement plaster.