Project Manager: Angelo Santoro
Location: Chatham Township, New Jersey 07928
Project Scope: Renovation and addition to an existing Chatham, NJ Tree House structure
What kid doesn’t grow up dreaming of having their own backyard tree house? Classic movies like the Sandlot, Stand By Me, and Swiss Family Robinson have helped to plant these tree house dreams and bring to life the adventures that can be had with some active imaginations, a handful of friends, and a sturdy hide out.
Homeowner, Carol Soos, had previously contracted a company to build a tree house platform and a simple structure that floated above three trees in her backyard.
But, when completed she didn’t think it had enough intrigue to keep her kids occupied. Having worked with Monk’s Angelo Santoro the previous year, she knew exactly where to go for help in making her Tree House dreams become a reality.
Project Manager, Angelo Santoro met with the Soos family including Carol and husband Eric, five year old twins Brandon and Nathan and three year old Megan to establish the vision for the finished tree house. When designing spaces for children, whether in a tree or a basement play room, it is important to consider scale, safety and durability. Windows, doors and furniture were scaled to make the kids comfortable. All edges were rounded and surfaces sanded smoothly to avoid splinters and all of the materials were chosen for their durability and ease of care and maintenance. Top on the wish list was more square footage and enclosing the structure to add privacy.
Monk’s renovation added about 50% more space to the existing structure. Adding a dutch door and six kid size windows with working shutters allowed the children to close off the outside world to create a private place to conduct top secret business.
Carrying out the client’s vision for a rustic retreat, Monk’s used hickory branches found in the near by woods as handles and door pulls. Inspired by seeing the carpenters craft a handle from a stick, the children stacked the work area with branches of all sizes hoping to have theirs included in the project.
Monk’s even created some interior furniture pieces by repurposing tree stumps from the property into kid size tables and seating. The entire tree house was re-sided with live edge cedar siding and a new cedar roof was installed.
Special care went into selecting weather resistant materials like stainless steel screws and galvanized and brass dead bolts and hinges to protect the structure from the elements.
The homeowner’s goal for this project was to create a space where all the neighborhood kids would want to play. Judging from the giggles coming from the newly renovated tree house, we say, “Mission accomplished”.
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