Accessibility on homeowners’ design checklist

Linda Lipp

As the housing market continues its recovery, homeowners are seeking homes that are larger as well as more accessible, inside and out, according to the American Institute of Architects Home Design Trends Survey for the first quarter of 2015.

“An increase in home square footage with the rising popularity of accessible design concepts points to a population that is preparing to age-in-place, or, perhaps, is anticipating responsibility for caretaking of older relatives in the future,” said AIA’s chief economist, Kermit Baker. “As homeowners prepare to stay in their current homes, investment in outdoor living spaces has also increased.”

The results of the survey, released June 29, further demonstrated gains across all major housing sectors, with the exception of new construction.

“The lag in new construction, taken together with the increases in remodeling, may be another indicator of homeowners wanting to remain in their current residences for the long haul,” Baker speculated.

The AIA Home Design Survey Index for the quarter was at 66 for billings and 73 for inquiries on new projects. Any score above 50 reflects growth.

“Business conditions at residential architecture firms continue to show solid gains, as billings, new design contracts, and inquiries for future project activity are all improving.” Baker said.

Crosby Construction

Crosby Construction was awarded a contract for the $2.3 million renovation and upgrade of the Syracuse wastewater treatment plant.

Strebig Construction

Strebig Construction was awarded a contract by Rea Magnet Wire for renovations to the engineering offices, conference room and IT room.

Work is underway and is expected to completed by the end of July.

Shawnee Construction

Shawnee Construction & Engineering was selected as general contractor for a new medical clinic in Kendallville.

Parkview Health awarded Shawnee the contract for the new 1,767 square-foot Parkview Noble Hospital - Wound Care Clinic at 401 Sawyer Road. The $285,700 project is scheduled for completion in October. Design Collaborative is the architect.

Shawnee also was selected as general contractor for a 20,990 square foot office expansion and renovation at Rea Magnet Wire, 3400 Coliseum Blvd.

The $840,000 project is scheduled for completion in September. MSKTD and Associates is the architect.

Goodwill is styling

Certified image consultant Leslee Hill, the president of Hill Image LLC, is partnering with Goodwill Industries of Northeast Indiana to host fashion‐related summer styling sessions at 11 a.m. on July 11 and Aug. 8 at Goodwill’s store at 525 E. Dupont Road.

The topic of the July session is “Find Your Color”and the August session will deal with fall trends. Sessions are free of charge and open to the public, and no registration is required. Additional styling sessions may be added if enough people are interested in them.

In addition to operating Hill Image, Hill styles clothing for Jophiel, a high‐end clothier in Fort Wayne. She has more than 15 years of experience in the fashion industry.

Crestwood features printmakers

Crestwoods Frame Shop and Gallery, Roanoke, will open a show called “Printmaking and More” with a reception from 4 to 7 p.m. July 9. The show runs through Aug. 8.

Featured artists are : Julie Wall Toles, Jerrod Tobias, Alan Larkin, Barbara Nohinek, Dale Enochs, Patrick George, Paul Demaree and Stephanie Carpenter. Toles will host a linocut workshop from 1 to 4 p.m. July 18. To register, call (260) 672-2080 or email:

Exhibit has Florida theme

The Orchard Gallery of Fine Art, 6312-A Covington Road, will present “A Taste of Florida: Paintings & More by Dawn Geradot,” July 1-30.

The exhibit features Gerardot’s hand-painted silk throw pillows, scarves and framed works, in addition to watercolors and furniture. An artists reception will be 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. July 11, with silk painting demonstrations at 11 a.m.and 1 p.m.

For information, visit

Meijer partners with Cricket

Cricket Wireless has formed a new strategic retail relationship with Meijer stores, which will office the wireless network’s service and devices at 213 locations in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky.

The stores will offer a variety of grab-and-go phones from manufacturers like HTC, LG, Samsung and ZTE. Consumers who want to keep their phones but switch to the Cricket network also can purchase universal SIM card kits that will fit any device.

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