853 Park Street

Amazing back yard renovation combined with first floor expansion and renovation of Arts and Crafts house built in the 1920’s.

853 N. Park Street
Haley Boehning and Charlie Goodlad

When backhoes struck dirt for the backyard transformation at 853 North Park Street, it was almost 10 years to the day after they did the same for the whole house renovation and expansion that was on this tour in 2008. When Haley Boehning and Charlie Goodlad decided it was time to complete their vision for the property, Travis and Shari of Ketron Custom Builders again helped them realize their vision of a home designed to entertain friends and family, inside and out. As with the prior renovation, a balance of modern touches with classic Arts & Crafts simplicity helps the multiple renovations marry seamlessly with the original house, and remain remarkably current.

As you enter the home, your eyes are drawn through the long chef’s kitchen to the backyard’s prominent black walnut tree. Large French doors lead from the kitchen and dining room onto a screen porch, allowing fresh breezes and people – but not mosquitos – to circulate throughout the first floor when the weather allows. The porch’s oversized windows are removable, with different combinations of screen or glass extending the space’s use through multiple seasons.

The backyard was designed to flow through multiple ‘rooms’ designated by cedar pergolas and a mix of limestone and bluestone patios and walkways. The grilling area closest to the indoor kitchen features both a gas and charcoal grill and large surface area for prep work. The main seating area is shaded during the day by a commercial-grade umbrella and is close enough to enjoy the sounds of cascading water feature one level below. The large dining area under the oversized pergola seats 10, and is illuminated at night by strings of lights. After dinner, guests often retire to the fire pit, which can also be fitted with a grill for open-fire cooking. The 1960’s-era cinder block garage remains, hidden under a new roof and cladding painted to match the house. Backyard supplies are kept in the gated side yard next to the garage, where firewood can be easily brought in through a special latched window in the back fence. Lighting and sound were also considered, with dimmable outdoor lights for cooking and eating, and speakers hidden throughout the landscaping. Hornbeams, weeping cherry trees and climbing wisteria will provide more shade over time. Following the “friendship fence” (matching design on both sides) past the birdbath and feeders, guests enter the kitchen garden, lovingly “maintained” by the couple’s 4-year old grandson.

After taking a research seminar hosted by the Columbus Landmarks Foundation and Columbus Metropolitan Library, the couple discovered that their house was built in 1919, not 1910 as the official records reflect. So they are now looking forward to hosting a second centennial celebration in two years … this time, under the stars.