At Home: Remodeling a home in Italian Village

Anne Evans Anne Evans At Home: Remodeling a home in Italian Village
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Sharon Roney and Jeff Kennedy.

Neighborhood, neighborhood, neighborhood. Where your house is located is probably the number one thing you can consider when buying a home.

“We were just coming down here all of the time,” says Sharon Roney, in reference to the Short North. She and her husband Jeff Kennedy had been living in Clintonville but often found themselves headed to the Short North nearly every weekend.

“Jeff had an apartment in the Short North when we met,” she says. “We missed the neighborhood and started looking for a place down here.”

It was 1997 and the couple had been looking to buy a home in Victorian Village. They decided to expand their search into Italian Village and that’s when they found the perfect home for them.

“We kind of stumbled into this house,” says Kennedy.

Roney agrees. “The location was perfect, and the size of the place felt right.”

The two car garage was an added bonus that really sweetened the deal.

The home was built in 1890 and is 1500 square-feet, with two bedrooms and two baths. The house was listed with a third bedroom but it is very small and the couple turned it into a nicely sized walk-in closet.

“This house has been a labor of love,” says Roney. “We’ve been doing a project every year or so.”

“We’ve done pretty much everything,” adds Kennedy. They replaced the water and gas lines, roof, and HVAC systems. All wallpaper was removed and the rooms were painted. The kitchen was a complete tear-out and redo, and now it is everything they wanted and often the central point of entertaining.

“It’s wonderful to work and cook in the kitchen together,” says Roney.

Bar stools of reclaimed pine, made in Killbuck, Ohio.

Stones from a favorite beach in Northern Michigan have been made into a feature by Roney.

The couple worked with Ruth Gless of Lincoln Street Studio to design the kitchen. Vic Silva was their contractor. When Gless suggested putting a bathroom in place of the stairway to the basement, the couple was unsure how that would work, but it did and now they love it.

The bathroom is compact, and the shower is in the middle of the space, with the water contained by shower curtains on both sides. It’s a great solution to add more usable space and having the extra shower is a nice addition. The stairway to the basement was relocated to under the main staircase.

The built in features different depths to accommodate an air duct.

Landscaping was recently completed in the front, side, and back yards. The upstairs master bath and laundry room is the next project on the list.

The house has all of its original trim, although it has been moved around. On their block are several homes that were built by the same family and have the same features, with slight modifications.

“You can see what similarities there are,” says Kennedy, “and what others have changed. Everybody’s lived here for quite a while, it’s a great block.”

The couple often gets together with neighbors and they host an annual brunch to celebrate the Doo Dah Parade.

K2U was one of their favorite places to enjoy. These days, they enjoy Basi Italia, Big Fun, the Goodale Park Music Series, all of the festivals, and everything else the neighborhood has to offer.

“It’s amazing how much the neighborhood has changed,” says Kennedy. “We’re planning to stay here and enjoy everything about it.”

Architects – Lincoln Street Studio
Landscaping – Turf Lawn
Railings – Fortin Ironworks
Living Room built-ins – Greg Russell
Bar Stools – AT-95
Contractor – Vic Silva

This home will be featured in the upcoming Short North Tour of Homes & Gardens. If you’re interested in checking out more homes in the Short North neighborhoods, the Short North Tour of Homes & Gardens is scheduled for Sunday, September 15th from 10am-6pm. Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 the day of the tour, and include access to a trolley shuttle bus for easy traveling between tour stops.

At Home is a monthly column on Columbus Underground focused on urban home remodeling and style as well as older home renovations and unique homes in Columbus. If you would like to have your home featured in the At Home series, please send an email to me at [email protected].

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