Floor Plans

I’ve made progress on the floor plans. I haven’t made a fancy 3D model of all of them like I did for the first floor, but here they are in a rough model of the house. I’ll get around to a more comprehensive version eventually, but  having the floor plans themselves is the more important part. It incorporates some minor changes to the first floor plan, including pushing the stairs back toward the center of the house and adding a landing to the stairs with a 90° turn. That puts the hallway into the center of the house so that it takes up as little space as possible.

The second floor gets two good-size bedrooms at the front, a full bath in the middle with a laundry closet off of the hallway, and a large master suite at the back with vaulted ceilings and a big walk-in closet. Up in the attic is another bedroom and a large storage closet. The basement gets an open area for pool table and bar, a theater room, a half-bath, utility closet, and space for storage and a workout area.

With the exception of a possible sink in the bar, all of the water supply and drain will use the existing wet wall, which will simplify plumbing since we’re living in the house and can’t take it all out at once. The plan also calls for removing the overhang on the second floor. It’s a nice way to bring in sunlight but we’re concerned about it’s structural integrity as well as properly weather sealing it. Instead we’ll incorporate tube-style skylights into the second floor to bring natural light into the interior of the house. There are a number of other details that aren’t revealed or included. We’ll probably need to have a lower ceiling in the office on the first floor to accommodate some of the drainage from the master bathroom, there will be some bulkheads along the south wall of the first floor for HVAC, the existing load bearing walls will be replaced by structural beams, with columns integrated into walls carrying the load to the new footings we’ll put in the basement.

Despite doing all of this work, I’ll still need an architect. I’ve been doing some “light reading” of the Chicago Building Code. While I think with enough time and energy (and more than a few flashbacks to Drafting class in high school) I could learn all of the requirements for a proper set of plans , ultimately the plans need to be signed by a licensed architect anyway. Given that, why not take advantage of the fact they already know the code and requirements far better than I ever will, plus can bring new ideas to the table that we may not have considered? Cost is the only reason I’ve avoided it so far, but realistically it’s a bad place to try to scrimp. Having scale drawings showing what we’re looking to do will hopefully make it less expensive if nothing else.

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