I love this house. Not just for what it is (which is the most romantic little bungalow under 114K) but for its history. My client has lived here for 20 years. Before that her grandmother lived here since 1952. Her mother grew up in the house and when my client turned 21, she bought it from her grandmother. It has been meticulously cared for and is just about to get a brand new roof.
I just listed it in University City. It has only been on the market for 4 days and has gotten great reviews from the few agents who have managed to get in in that short time. It is right off Midland between Olive and Page. It has 2 beds and 1 bath. The bedrooms are big with actual closets and the bathroom has updated fixtures with original honeycomb tile. The kitchen has new IKEA cabinets and bamboo floors but retains the charm of the original home. The main floor has wood throughout and special features include a decorative fireplace (could be wood burning with some work) a bay window in the dining room and French doors that open to the enclosed front porch. About 5 minutes from Clayton, The Delmar Loop and Forest Park.
The layout is ideal. The living room is extra large so that it can be divided into two areas. Right now my client has it divided into a bright sunny reading area and a formal living room centered around the mantle. The living room opens into the dining room which makes it perfect for entertaining. Next is the kitchen situated in the center of the home dividing the public space from the private. The two bedrooms are in the rear of the main floor each with large windows and plenty of light.
The home itself is situated on an almost double lot and completely fenced. The yard is enormous with large, old trees (recently trimmed) offering plenty of shade. In back there are hosta gardens and fern gardens and a rock garden. The brick patio is on the side, easily accessed through the kitchen door so it is perfect for outdoor meals.
It is still available so contact me directly if you’d like to see it. Or call your agent. It is currently listed in the MLS for $113,900.
BoKlok means “live smart” and BoKlok is what you get when you combine the Swedish furniture company IKEA and Skanska a Swedish construction company.
I am definitely an advocate of affordable well-designed homes, but I am not fond of the aesthetic. Well, that’s not exactly true, I like it, but home after home with nearly identical exteriors send chills in the Stepford Wives kind of way.
As I was looking for more information, I found this article on the new village scheduled in the UK. The article is pretty positive but this quote articulated one of my concerns, “It may offer domestic solutions, but also suggests a depressingly mechanistic view of humanity, hinting at a monotonous one-size-fits-all suburban future. At what point does responding to society’s needs become a form of social engineering?”
The Boklok answer to this concern is to not flood market and to constantly improve the design. I am really in no position to be critiquing the Swedish sense of design and I admire the efficiency and precision but it seems like this sort of assembly line style of architecture (sustainable as it may be) can’t really take into account the orientation of the site, the position of the home in relation to other homes, the placement of windows and doors. That’s really the objection for all pre-fab options, isn’t it?
I’m not anti-pre-fab. So what is my issue with this? It is more of an emotional objection, possibly an irrational fear. There is something I have been trying to articulate since I came back from vacation and this commodity seems to be striking that same chord. (If you are still reading, bare with me I almost there.)
The allure of traveling for me is adventure: the idea that I can be taken out of the familiar into the unfamiliar and hopefully the surreal. I like different places because I value different perspectives. I like to see the basics through another culture’s eyes. Cabbage is cabbage no matter where you go but coleslaw and kimchi offer very different experiences. Shelter is shelter but how it fits with the particular landscape of a place and how it expresses a particular culture’s identity is what is so fascinating. The ability to mass produce and distribute these buildings not only throughout Scandinavia and western Europe but anywhere and everywhere, makes me sad.
It’s funny. Someone else brought this whole Ikeatown business to my attention and suggested that it would make an interesting post. I am wondering now if that person knew it was going to send me into and existential crisis.
Beautiful new listing on Sidney and Nebraska an area of Tower Grove East that has seen drastic improvements over the past 5-10 years. See the listing site at http://sidney.dawngriffin.com for more information!
Towards the end of our trip I asked Jay if he was ready to go home. He said, “Yeah, I accomplished what I wanted.” Until that point I didn’t know that he had an agenda so I asked him what he had wanted to do. His reply,”I wanted to relax and be inspired.” This conversation took place on the grounds of the Swedish Museum of Architecture in Stockholm just as we were leaving. I think he said it perfectly.
Inspired is definitely the right word. Specifically I found myself fascinated by three different aspects:Transportation, Energy and Development.
Transportation: I have traveled abroad only three times but each time I was impressed by how easy it was for me to get around. This trip we didn’t use a car once. It was all trains, ferries, subways and BIKES. From the moment we arrived I was impressed with the bike culture but this fascination peaked in Copenhagen, Denmark where 30% of the city’s population uses a bike as the primary mode of transportation. I was awed by the fact that this very old city has been able to adapt to new modes of transportation without losing it’s architectural identity of cobblestone streets. There are bike lanes every where and bikers even have their own traffic signals. On major thoroughfares bike lanes are situated in between car lanes and sidewalks but are distinct paths. Pedestrians do not walk in the bike lanes, bikers don’t ride on the sidewalks and cars know how to yield.
Development: Most exciting to me is the development in Copenhagen because it is new, modern. Urban development and modern construction are very serious matters in the rapidly growing city. What is most inspiring is that buildings are not being built with cheap facades to mimic the existing architecture, but thought is being given to dimension and proportion so that the modern co-exists with the traditional in a seamless way. The new is truly new.
Energy and Conservation: From the major installation of wind turbine fields to the minor steps of reducing waste at restaurants to the articles in newspapers and the exhibitions at museums the awareness of the importance of conservation and energy is much more pronounced.
So, I’m back now and definitely inspired, but I don’t know how relaxed I am. I think the more appropriate word is energized.
Dawn Griffin Real Estate Blog
I’m an experienced Saint Louis Realtor specializing in St. Louis City as well as neighborhoods like Webster Groves, Maplewood, Clayton, University City and Ladue. With an undergraduate degree in Education and Master's in Urban Planning and Real Estate Development — I have the heart of teacher.
I have been immersed in Residential Real Estate, helping home buyers and sellers understand the market, manage the ambiguities and negotiate the best terms for themselves. I am consistently voted a 5-Star Agent by clients and featured as one of St. Louis' Best Agents in Saint Louis Magazine.