PLYWOOD DEMOLITION CHUTES AND GREEN DUMPSTERS have become fixtures on the American landscape. From San Francisco to New York, from Newport to Houston, homeowners are renovating perfectly livable interiors as if their lives depended on it. What were once considered luxury spacesâ€“commercially equipped kitchens, wine cellars, package-wrapping roomsâ€“are, for some, basic necessities now. And while people in different parts of the country have slightly different ideas about must-have renovations, most must have luxurious kitchens and bath space, and lots of it.
In Newport, Rhode Island, architect Jim Estes says his firm is renovating â€śwhite elephantsâ€ť from top to bottom. â€śThereâ€™s a big emphasis on expensive kitchens, which a lot of these houses never had,â€ť he observes. â€śWeâ€™re going well over $200 a square foot and sometimes over $500 for bathrooms.â€ť Also in Newport, Brian Arnold, of B. R. Arnold Construction