Published at Monday, April 08th, 2019 - 12:26:51 PM. Home Decoration. By Alvarie Schröder.
More attention is being paid to using all outdoor areas, including urban rooftops. But working on outdoor spaces that are high up adds additional challenges. Make sure your clients consult a structural engineer to determine how much furniture, decking, and soil a terrace, balcony, or roof can support and how to transport those items up top. Where an elevator may not be large enough, a crane is required, which increases costs, says landscape architect Marc Nissim, owner of the Harmony Design Group in Westfield, N.J. Landscape designer Amber Freda, whose eponymous firm is based in New York, helped clients with a garden in that citys West Village neighborhood where restrictions limited them to 35 pounds per square foot. The building also didnt have an elevator. Her solution: lightweight potting soil and custom red cedar planters.
Spindler is active in local preservationist and historic groups. But perhaps the most important connection she can make is with a capable contractor. While the exteriors of many San Francisco Victorians are protected by historic preservation ordinances, the interiors are generally not. Electricians and plumbers often suggest that the only way to update a Victorian is to tear out original walls. But Spindler knows it can be less expensive to drop pipes and other infrastructure straight through the homes balloon framing or to wire electrical lines through an attic than to tear out valuable, original plaster work. “The crazy things that people do to these poor old houses. The walls never look the same,” Spindler laments. She compares the work of contractors who skillfully retain old Victorian walls to that of arthroscopic surgeons, who use fiber optic technology and video cameras to avoid open surgery: “Its better for the patient in the long run.” While Spindler is glad to see more young people interested in historic homes, she acknowledges her niche is limited by the number of Victorians in her market, estimated to be around 7,500 single-family homes. “Its not a lot, and we lose more every year,” she says. “Theyre not making any more of them, obviously.”
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