Cole/Kennedy Residence

All accessible renovations and additions respected the elegant old house and matched to the point where no one could tell the difference.

Cole Family

Ben Avon, PA

Residential Renovation/Addition/Accessibility

Project Description

Jeff Cole’s sister, Kasey Kennedy, her husband, and daughter decided to purchase a house together.  Tusick & Associates Architects was hired to review selected homes for modifications for accessibility; determining if the house was feasible for space modifications and if these modifications would be cost effective.  After a year’s time, a house was found and purchased.  It was an elegant house with distinct historic design features that required historic design attention.  The goal was to modify the existing site and house without anyone being able to point to the renovations/addition. All elements had to blend.   The new tower’s exterior wood had to match the existing as well as the unusual slate color.  After long hours of searching, we found the roof slate.  All existing wood siding was salvaged, stored and reused. Paint colors were custom mixed to match existing paint colors.  In the end, the new exterior façade blended perfectly.

The same occurred for the interior renovations.  All renovations respected the elegant house and matched to the point where new and old blended so well that no one could tell the difference or that modifications had occurred for accessibility.  The grand house was looking as good as new and functioning as an accessible home for its new family.

Accessibility was custom designed for Jeff Cole has specific requirements.  Special care occurred because all the standard guidelines did not match his size.  He is tall, 6’7” and in a wheelchair.  Every aspect of home had to accommodate a tall man.  During construction, Jeff was brought into his personal space to ensure that the path of travel could accommodate him as well as his bathroom.  The wheelchair turning radius was larger than standard, the shower had to be bigger and the lavatory had to match his height as well as all the accessories.  To date Jeff is enjoying his accessible space.