The McMillan Residence
The McMillan Residence project was undertaken during the Summer of 2016. The home was purchased by a new owner and the first thing she wanted to do was have a pool installed and make the space her own. The lot had been previously landscaped and included beds, turf area, a pond and a couple of wooden decks. Some of these elements we elected to keep and some had to be reworked or eliminated. We worked closely with a pool contractor on this job and contributed the excavation and help with installation of the pool shell on that end, but worked separately with the homeowner on the landscape. Overall the project was clearly substantial, but a great deal of that was billed by the pool contractor for his elements.
Ultimately the landscaping elements included the installation of apx 1200sq’ of large (22”x36”) slabs for the pool surround, a fence to meet pool codes, natural stone steps at the house, transplanting of existing material, sod, and some reworking and reshaping of the existing pond in order to make it all work together.
The challenges of this job were primarily space related as it was a tight lot with limited access from the street and construction accessibility from only one side and the back thanks to the cooperation of a neighbor. We were unable to excavate directly into trucks and had to build a small road in through a ditch at the back of the property. Once excavated we also had to bury the overhead electrical lines along the side of the property to meet pool code. Additionally we had to have the fiberglass pool shell craned in over the electrical lines in the back and dropped into the hole.
Once the pool was in an hooked up we came back to complete the landscaping, working our way from the front of the property to the back so we could “paint ourselves out of the room” as it were. The large scale slabs were cumbersome to work with but lend a great sense of weight and contemporary styling to the landscaping. The homeowner wanted to stay with dark colors, so we chose grey pavers and black coping to match the black pool, which ended up looking great. Closing it in we opted for a horizontal rail fence and kept the remaining bed areas simple, transplanting mature rhododendrons and Lilac.
The new landscape was very well received and the homeowner now has put her own contemporary stamp on her new back yard. Coupled with the existing beds and pond this space is now very beautiful, functional, unique and suited to the owners taste and lifestyle.