Jake and Karen contacted us in 2013 to build a home on their property in Corvallis. The plans for the 1,700 sq. ft. home borrow from “The Not So Big House,” by Sarah Susanka, whose motto is to “build better rather than bigger.” Jake and Karen decided to build and design usable spaces with a focus on solid construction. That is what made GCCI the right choice for them.


The 3 bedroom/2.5 bath took six months to build from start to finish of construction. The banisters add a special touch to the interior of the home. They were repurposed by GCCI from the original 150 year-old farm house on the property.


We created an integrated sound system, featuring remote speakers throughout the house and a hub centrally located under the staircase. Brian and Merrilee knew they wanted to install a wood-burning stove in the near future, but the search for the perfect unit, along with a timely permit process, put the installation on hold. GCCI was able to pre-pipe for the stove, which will provide the couple savings in the future.


The kitchen is highlighted by Katana Frameless Cabinets by Canyon Creek in Maple and Formica Seagrass matte countertops. The clients chose a Proflo Stainless Kitchen Sink and Moen accessories to go along with Marmoleum flooring. The same flooring flows into the bathroom, accented by matte Formica Beluga Beige countertops.


Trec Guardian, a composite deck material, was chosen for its high resistance to the elements. Cedar railing finish off the exterior space.


The clients decided to install Fujitsu HVAC units as an energy upgrade to their home. As an alternative to a traditional furnace, the Fujitsu units offer high efficiency ratios. GCCI installed one outdoor unit connected to indoor units in the attic and second floor. This selection eliminated the interior space needed for air handlers. We also installed a Lifebreath heat recovery ventilator (HRV) to maintain indoor air quality.


Another important energy upgrade the clients chose was high insulation to create a better R-value. This provides a thermal boundary to the house. We installed R-50 fiberglass batts to the entire main level, R-49 into flat ceiling areas, and R-21 unfaced sound control insulation in the den.


GCCI is serious about weather-proofing our new builds. Underneath the James Hardie siding and Cypress trim is: TriBuilt vapor barrier, Moistop tape around the windows and doors, and z flashing above all the trim. Milgard Styleline 3D North Energy Package windows provide more insulation than a standard window package. The superintendents at GCCI are proud to help our customers choose economically-minded, high-value upgrades. If you are interested in a new build, addition, remodel, or energy upgrade, please call us today at 541-754-6326.

G. Christianson Construction is proud to have won two Earth Advantage Builder of the Year awards, which recognize achievements in sustainable & energy efficient construction practices: Lowest EPS® Score & Zero Energy!

As an Earth Advantage builder, G. Christianson Construction entered the first PHIUS certified passive house in Corvallis, Oregon. We completed this passive house in 2016, incorporating a variety of systems & materials to create superior energy efficiency and indoor air quality, as well as being environmentally responsible.

This custom home was built to use 70% less energy than a code built home per the world’s most rigorous Passive House standard. It achieves this by very limited infiltration, thermal bridge free construction techniques, super insulation, and heat recovery ventilation. Its 12” thick walls boast an R-value of 51.8, obtained with 2” of cork insulation over BIBS wall insulation. The 32” thick roof has an R-value of 102.4, while the 17” thick floor has an R-value of 63.9. High efficiency doors and triple paned windows, contribute to its energy efficiency. It also has 8.25 kW solar panels, Energy Star appliances, and natural daylighting to keep its energy bills low. A typical Oregon home of a similar size built to code would have a carbon footprint between 19.1 to 20.6 tons of carbon dioxide per yr.; this home has a carbon footprint of 4.0 tons per year before the solar array, which brings it down to 0 tons of carbon monoxide. The home was computer modeled to make sure it met PHIUS energy requirements. By adding solar panels on the garage this home is Net-Zero energy usage.

Indoor air quality has a huge role in overall health. Where possible, this home has eco-friendly building materials that off-gas fewer harmful chemicals. Its ventilation system not only prevents heat loss, but also reduces airborne contaminates, reducing the chances of health risks like allergies, asthma, and more serious health detriments.

During the construction of this home the landscape was taken into consideration as well. Practices to promote healthy landscapes were implemented. Erosion was minimized by use of straw and minimizing vegetation clearing and deforestation. The landscaping uses many native species and avoids the use of invasive species.

This home’s materials were chosen with the environment in mind. Where possible, locally sourced materials were chosen. All the materials chosen are durable and high quality, to last a lifetime, if not generations.

Water conservation was also addressed in this house. It has metal roofs and gutters plumbed for rain water catchment, Nebia low flow shower heads, and a weather dependent irrigation controller to reduce household water consumption without sacrificing comfort.

In addition to its environmental efficiency, this gorgeous home boasts grey quartz countertops atop white and blue painted shaker cabinetry, dark stainless steel appliances, and a subway tile backsplash in the kitchen. Elegant white walls bathed in natural sunlight accentuate the hickory flooring throughout, with a wood inlay feature to add a nautical flair to the transition from the kitchen to the family room. The sleek bathroom has a seamless tile shower with mosaic accents and modern vanity with clean lines. The reading nook under the stairs in the family room is a cozy spot to curl up with a book. Expansive views greet you through every tilt & swing triple paned window.

Designed with “Not So Big House” principals to be effortlessly comfortable using minimal energy, with exquisite finishes and details, this home is a beautiful and cozy retreat from the bustle of everyday life.


G. Christianson Construction recently completed the first passive house in Corvallis!

This beautiful Contemporary Craftsman style custom passive house has a carbon footprint 1/5 that of a typically built house in Oregon of a similar size. Its 12″ thick walls with cork insulation, high efficiency windows & doors, solar panels, heat pump hot water, Energy Star appliances, air intake unit, and natural daylighting keep its utility bills low.

In addition, this gorgeous home boasts grey quartz countertops atop white and blue painted shaker cabinetry, black stainless steel appliances, and a subway tile backsplash in the kitchen. Elegant white walls bathed in natural sunlight accentuate the hickory flooring throughout, with a wood inlay feature to add interest in the transition from the kitchen to the family room. The sleek bathroom has a seamless tile shower with mosaic accents and modern vanity with clean lines. The reading nook under the stairs in the family room is a cozy spot to curl up with a book. Expansive views greet you through every tilt & swing triple paned window.

Designed to be effortlessly comfortable using minimal energy, with exquisite finishes  and details, this home is a beautiful and cozy retreat from the bustle of everyday life.



Building with sustainability has been at the heart of G. Christianson Construction’s motto for 30 years. Founder, Greg Christianson, passed his passion for the environment on to his son, Carl, who took over his father’s business in 2014. Out of Greg’s appreciation for nature and the planet, he restored six acres of his personal property back to native species, and he built a company that builds energy efficiency into every project.  When it came time for Carl to make a nest for his young family, he chose to build a new home to Passive House standards, and in the process became the first builder in Corvallis to be certified by the Passive House Institute.

Building “green” is a scale that the consumer can decide where they fall on. On one end of the spectrum, installing LED lights over incandescent lights saves energy and waste. On the other side, building Earthships out of 100% recycled materials takes nothing more than has already been produced from the planet. The G. Christianson approach is somewhere in between the two. In building Passive houses, our craftsmen build an extremely air-tight home with a focus on clean air circulation. This means, proper and secure window and door installations, where heating energy does not leak out. This also means building a strong frame and the absence of gaps in the structure. It may raise the question, “Aren’t all houses built alike?” The simple answer is, “No.” A house that pops up in a quick time frame is not going to have the same quality craftsmanship as a house that takes nine to twelve months to build.

The Passive building approach was born out of a desire “to create structures that are durable, resilient, comfortable, healthy, and super energy efficient” [www.phius.org/about/mission-history]. Passive Houses are built in accordance these five building-science principles*:

  • It employs continuous insulation through its entire envelope without any thermal bridging.
  • The building envelope is extremely airtight, preventing infiltration of outside air and loss of conditioned air.
  • It employs high-performance windows (typically triple-paned) and doors
  • It uses some form of balanced heat- and moisture-recovery ventilation and uses a minimal space conditioning system.
  • Solar gain is managed to exploit the sun’s energy for heating purposes and to minimize it in cooling seasons.

* http://www.phius.org/what-is-passive-building-/the-principles

Admittedly, the construction industry is slow to initiate change from the status-quo. The consumer should be aware of material and product selections when seeking a cleaner living space. Choose materials like Marmoleum that are made of recycled materials and installed with very low to no-VOC adhesives. Ultimately, businesses provide what the consumer demands. We can all stand to take a more serious look at the future of our planet and ask ourselves, “What are we choosing to invest in,” and “How is that product affecting my health and my family’s wellness?” At G. Christianson Construction, we aren’t striving to build the biggest mansion on the block. Rather, we believe that building small and sustainable is the smarter, eco-conscious solution.

Two members of the G. Christianson Construction team are PHIUS Certified Builders, and another member of our team is a certified Sustainable Home Professional (SHP). For consultations on an energy-efficient home remodel, or inquiries into building a new home, please call our office to set up an appointment.


To see Passive Houses near you, visit: https://passivehouse-international.org/index.php?page_id=262


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Before Construction

Mike and Karen asked us to visit their home in June 2013 to replace their old, rotting back deck. They wanted to build an exceptional outdoor living space that extended their main floor into the expansive forest of Vineyard Mountain that surrounds their home. Our homeowners felt a tri-level deck would be best as it would incorporate the natural slope of the yard and give them the outdoor space they wanted. Additionally, a multi-level deck allowed our homeowners to have defined spaces, such as a dining area and a lounge area to sit by the fire, rather than just one large deck surface. Mike and Karen’s previous deck provided no access to the yard from the back of the house, so we made it a priority to give them access from multiple points on the deck.

Final Sketch Up rendering

Final Sketch Up rendering


During Framing                     Deck Skirt Complete

We took dimensions of their home and built a 3D model on the computer to visualize the deck and made adjustments until we had exactly what Mike and Karen had envisioned for their deck. We also modeled various types of handrails that could accommodate undermounted lighting and then worked with J&J Electric to create the lighting plan. The homeowners also wanted the stairs to function as extra seating when they host parties, so we designed wide stair treads so their guests will have more places to sit. The next step was engineering and permits, and then construction. We started excavation in January, deck framing and decking in February, handrails were installed in March, and then the electricians installed the lights. We installed the natural gas fire table in early April.

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Our homeowners choose Nexan’s NextDeck powder coated aluminum decking in Light Gray. Nexan says that “NextDeck is a revolutionary decking product that offers unsurpassed durability and longevity. Specifically designed to replace other high-maintenance decking products, NextDeck® delivers a truly maintenance-free choice. NextDeck® gives homeowners the freedom to enjoy their outdoor living space and activities, rather than spending countless hours and money on deck maintenance and repairs. Designed for the life of your deck, NextDeck® aluminum decking is fireproof, pest resistant and will not rust, rot, sag, splinter, warp or crack in freezing temperatures.”

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Karen and Mike also chose a Stainless Steel Cable Railing system and Nexan’s Black powder coated posts to support the steel cables. The steel cable railing system allows anyone sitting on the deck to enjoy the various views of the yard without feeling like their sight lines are being obstructed. We installed LED strip lighting under all of the handrails along with step lighting on every other tread to provide safe access at night and ambient lighting. The fire table is an American Fyre Designs 48” diameter Contempo Round Firetable fueld by natural gas. We finished the deck with a Rustic Hardiplank skirt to match the home’s existing LP siding, the skirt also conceals the framing members. We also added a metal roof under the upper deck to provide a dry place to store outdoor furniture during the winter.

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In the evenings, the warm glow of the lighting and the fire table make this a cozy and welcoming place to sit and enjoy the gorgeous, peaceful surroundings. Mike and Karen are exceptionally happy with the finished deck. They were thrilled with our work and dedication through the coldest and wettest part of the year to have this completed in time for summer in the Willamette Valley.

In 2013, Alpha Phi’s leadership met with us to remodel the Sorority basement. Their goal was to convert multiple storage rooms and a dark and dingy meeting room into a space that the ladies would enjoy using. Their priorities were to find a General Contractor who could provide great communication, timeliness, help with design, material selection, scheduling, and value. We were able to bring in our resources to meet the challenge and remodel the basement during summer break.    

 In 2013, we started the remodeling project; our 3rd at the Alpha Phi Sorority. The basement project consisted of two major pieces. First, we needed to create a large, warm, functional, and welcoming space. We created multiple spaces within this one large room for the ladies to study, watch television, socialize, or wait for their laundry to finish. 


Meeting area before remodel…


Meeting area with built-in cabinetry.

We demolished walls between the old chapter meeting room, hallway, maintenance closet, and the trunk storage room. We discovered the posts supporting the house had dryrot and needed to be replaced. That inspired us to add a steel beam to open the floor plan by removing one of the bad posts. We leveled the floor with gypcrete, replaced leaky pipes, insulated, added lighting, replaced a rotten piece of wall, reinforced the flooring system and installed new wiring.

 Once the old walls were removed and the dryrot was taken care of, we created an open area where the ladies could study or hold sorority meetings. A large table with room for 6 to sit comfortably was placed under a contemporary, but bright pendant light which provides ample task lighting for the table. Recessed lighting was added to provide more lighting on the white board and bulletin board that are located on the walls beside the table. Additionally, in the east side of the basement is a functional laminate storage unit with drawers and cupboards for the girls to store supplies. It also provides a flat large surface separate from the table to spread out paperwork or other study materials. 

IMG_1702 Stitch

Media room before remodel.


Study area, media room, and reading nook.


Studying area.

On the west side of the basement, another table was placed that will seat 4. This table can be moved around the room as needed by the ladies. Ambient recessed lighting and task lighting was placed around the west part of the basement that provides warm, but strong enough light for studying. A small reading nook was created in the west part of the basement to give the ladies a comfortable spot to read and provide more seating. This area is also a part of the lounge area and can be used when the ladies have movie night. In addition to the reading nook, a large microfiber sofa provides more seating in the basement. 


Reading nook and extra seating for the media area.

Shaw “No Limits” carpet tiles were chosen for the entire basement. These carpet tiles can easily be individually replaced if needed. New Mannington vinyl was installed into the laundry and bathroom. New MDF baseboard and casings were added after the new carpet tiles were installed. 

Second, we needed to replace the very old gas boiler and water heaters. We installed a new Lennox HRV3-150 Heat Recovery Ventilator to bring fresh air into the basement. We also installed a Lochinvar 95% high efficiency boiler with direct ventilation to heat the sorority house. We additionally installed a Bradford White 98% ultra high efficiency water heater and storage tanks to provide ample heat for all of the showers.


Mechanical room before remodel….


Mechanical room with new HVAC systems.

During the last snowstorm the awning canopy at one of the Corvallis Sororities collapsed under the weight of the snow. Fortunately, it was late at night and no one was hurt. We arrived that evening after the Fire Department and stabilized the roof to prevent it from overturning and hurting someone, then we installed temporary tarps to keep water out of the Sorority walls. The next day we disassembled the roof and weatherproofed the house where the lagbolts had pulled out of the wall. We provided a fixed price bid for re-building the canopy and once it was approved we applied for permits. The City’s plan review department found a code provision that required a rebuilt canopy to need expensive fire sprinklers. We worked with the Sorority to find a less expensive alternative, rebuild the structure out of non-combustible material (steel).

We have installed new foundations and welded a new structure out of steel. By reusing the triangular pieces we were able to reduce costs, we have repaired the handrails and deck that were crushed during the collapse. The last steps are to install a new metal roof and gutters. G. Christianson Construction is able to help our clients by navigating Corvallis’ requirements and creating a lasting product they will be proud of. Please give us a call if you need help with your project 541-754-6326.

–          Carl

Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity in Corvallis contacted us when they realized that their front entry facade was quickly becoming unsafe due to extensive dryrot. You could easily push a screwdriver through the wood mullions between the single pane windows. If you leaned on the wall, the entire window system would deflect about an inch.

We meet with the Alumni representative Gerry Reese who asked us if we could replace the window system during summer break. We proposed a window system supported by clear grade Douglas fir glue-lam beams with commercial glass and black powder coated aluminum capping system. The results are spectacular.

After a thorough design and engineering process, as well as permits from Corvallis, we began construction in July last year. We discovered the front entry canopy also had significant dryrot including its main support beam. So we replaced the canopy with a much more attractive version. The new canopy consists of a new glulam beam stained to match the window system. Knotty cedar tongue and groove soffits flank the canopy’s beam. We wrapped the canopy edges with black powder coated metal trim to match the window system.

The new front doors are Therma Tru Insulated Fiberglass Classic Craft 890 which we stained and lacquered to resemble Alder wood with an Early American stain. The door hardware included a Simplex 1000 manual push button lock (to allow easy access for the fraternity men) and Dorma closers.

The commercial glass is bronze tinted, tempered, with argon gas, low-e #2 coating for energy efficiency.

We finished the project on time for the 2013 school year.

Having been in business for more than 27 years, we here at G. Christianson have installed a huge variety of exterior projects. About five years ago, we resided our office and added landscaping using native Oregon plants. As you can see in the pictures of previous G. Christianson projects, new siding can really improve the “curb appeal” of a home.

We recently installed a new back patio and pergola on a customer’s home. The pergola replaced a very plain back deck and made the whole environment more comfortable and inviting. Pergolas can also be a good, decorative source of shade. We can help you determine the best pergola design with Google Sketchup and it’s Sunlight Rendering Feature.  A few of our customers even grow vine plants such as Wisteria on their pergola’s and trellises. We have also built trellises over fences to support grape vines.

One of our employees built a low fence with an arbor in the entryway to make the back yard feel a little more closed in from a street behind the house.

Whatever your situation, we can offer great advice and ideas to spruce up the exterior of your home. Go to our website at http://gchristiansonconstruction.com/remodels/additions/decks/. There, you will find more ways we can help you beautify your home.

Then call us for your free estimate!

– Tanner

Decorative Trellis & Custom Garden Gate

Decorative Trellis & Custom Garden Gate

Decorative Cedar Fence with Square Lattice and Trellis above

Decorative Cedar Fence with Square Lattice and Trellis above

We did a great job making their new garage match the existing house, in fact one of Mike and Terri’s neighbors asked “what did the contractor do at your home?” because he didn’t realize the carport was replaced by a new garage.

Mike and Terri gave us a call in February about enclosing their carport with two new walls, doors and a new garage door. They hired Bruce Osen to create a hand drawn design to capture their ideas and the spirit of their home. I told Mike we could start as soon as he desired. Once we agreed on the price of the project and had the permits in hand we began by temporarily supporting the carport and roof by installing temporary posts and beams. Then we removed the old columns, sawcut the slab and dug out the old concrete. Next we poured new reinforced concrete footings and stem walls. Our crew framed up the new walls with 2×6 lumber, OSB sheeting for shear strength, 5/8” exterior AC grade plywood sheeting and battens to match the look of the house’s siding. One of the hallmarks of our projects is that we focus on making the addition seamlessly match the existing house.

We installed two ThermaTru fiberglass doors with Sclage F51 Plymouth knobs and Schlage deadbolts. We installed a Therma Tech insulated Traditional Raised Panel Steel Sectional garage door with a Genie Chain Drive garage door opener. On the north side of the garage we installed three PlyGem horizontal sliding windows to let in fresh air and light. Inside the garage we installed drywall and paint. The city required a new layer of 5/8” fire rated drywall on the walls between the house and the garage. Mike and Terri are also going to replace the doors into the house with new fire rated doors. Mike and Terri are very happy with our work.

Please give us a call if you are tired of your carport and are ready to convert it to a garage! 541-754-6326

–       Carl

Who We Are

We are premier builders for additions, remodeling and new construction for Corvallis and the Willamette Valley. We specialize in unique and challenging projects and apply sustainable building principles.

Contact Information

Please call us for a Free Estimate!




644 NW 4th St. Corvallis, OR

Greg Christianson

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