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This Old House Austin Project

This Old House always chooses a house renovation away from Boston for their winter project.  They do minimal work, with the the host (currently Kevin), Tommy, Norm, Richard, Roger and camera crew flying in every couple of weeks to check in on the work, which is done primarily by a local contractor.

In the late summer of 2006 we here in Austin heard TOH was looking for a “green” renovation project and the producers were coming to town to talk to prospective owners.

I heard nothing about the project until I noticed that the Austin webcams were up and running!  I then found this article, which explains the whole project.

Now it was detective time. It took us a few days to track down the location of the site.  I’m not going to post the address here until the project is complete, but it is located in a nice, older neighbourhood in central Austin. I think the renovation will fit in well with the flavour of the street, as opposed to some of the McMansion bulldoze-and-rebuild that’s going on in these neighbourhoods. So, on to the pictures.  I drove down to the site on November 17, 2006 and saw that construction was well under way. The roof was bumped up at the front and back and looking through the front door I could see that the first level was mostly a shell, waiting for the rebuilding to start.

Below is a picture of the side of the house - it’s a corner lot. In the second picture, looking up at the back wall, it looks like the upper floor is now shaped like a ‘T’, with a door opening framed in for a walk-out deck.

The backyard is very small and from the look of the corner marker, a large deck is in the plan.  I’d like to stop down every two weeks or so to see how the project is progressnig.  Our woodworking club is trying to make contact with the TOH staff to see if we can get Kevin or Norm or Tommy to speak at our club meeting the next time they are in town.  Stay tuned!

I went down to the site again on December 15 and saw that progress is coming along, but slowly.  You can see that the metal roof is being installed and the window and door installation is completed. It looks like they’re trying to add some style elements by the brackets at the junction of the roofline and side wall.

The second-floor walkout patio and backyard deck is well on its way, with round columns supporting the corners.

This is where things are on Janary 27. Exterior construction is done, final painting wrapping up and landscaping is underway. I could see through the front door that most of the major inside work is complete, just waiting for final trim, so it looks like things are wrapping up!