Saturday, March 9, 2013

Old Buildings...sometimes...

A few years ago I first looked at this house with some people who had just bought it. They were having a hard time figuring out what to do with it.

It was one of those homes that only the architect who designed it could love. Multi split level with no real rooms or separated space and stairs every time you turned around. Just very odd, nothing made any sense.

We struggled with the options.... how can a place like this be remodeled into something that they envisioned for their lake home and that would be functional for them...
Tear down house, Ely MN,

The conversation stopped and those folks just used it as a lake home for a few years as it was.

In the past year they sold it to someone that I am working with on some other projects and so, once again, we went through the exercise of thinking of how to remodel this crazy place into something functional.
Steps to old weird house,

The whole place would have to be gutted, walls and floors re-framed and windows and doors reconfigured... not much would be saved and, even then, the house would not be what they really wanted. It would just be this weird, reconfigured building and it would probably cost more than if we just tore it down and started over. It left us all just shaking our heads a bit, but there were just no other clear options that even came close to making sense. We checked to make sure the building is far enough from the lake that, if we tore it down we could rebuild on the same spot, (sometimes an extensive and expensive remodel is justified if it's proximity to the lake makes the spot prohibitive to rebuild on due to zoning ordinances). sometimes, after all the options are weighed, the course of action becomes clear... 

Walls and floors coming down, ely,
A clear view to the lake now,
the old house is gone,
Removing the block foundation, hopefully, we can build something here...