Case Studies

Case Studies

Case Study: A Four-Season, Formal Front Landscape


A pair of 1921 Renaissance Revival 3-story homes creates a powerful façade along this East Lakeview street, just blocks from Lake Michigan. The formal style of architecture lacked a complementary landscape, which gave rise to an opportunity to create an eye-catching Italian Renaissance-inspired garden. In this urban setting, lot coverage is dominated by impervious [...]

Case Study: On the Same Level


This backyard had many challenges. An abandoned concrete staircase remained from a previous renovation. Under this staircase, steps leading down to a basement door needed to be reworked in the new design. Disconnected multi-level spaces, drainage issues and a large, dying tree all contributed to an unpleasant environment. The homeowners wanted room to accommodate [...]

Case Study: Maximizing a Small Space


Our clients reside in a charming Dutch colonial on a small city lot (50’ x 65.67’) in Evanston. The only location for a living space is in a narrow fenced area (35’ x 16’) on the south side. Our clients wanted to make this space usable and increase its privacy from the street and [...]

Case Study: Outdoor Renovation


The homeowners of this beautiful 1889 landmark Victorian house, situated a block from Lake Michigan, had spent several years renovating it to make it their own. It was time to turn their attention to the neglected backyard. Several architectural additions had reduced its size. An asphalt driveway taking up most of the space and [...]

Case Study: Making the Grade


Our clients’ magnificent home, built in 1903 for Gordon L. Pirie and Samuel Carson (of Carson, Pirie & Scott), is built on a slope with a 15-foot drop from the front of the house to the back alley. In the backyard, their two-story, four bedroom coachhouse lacked a pretty garden view. Their existing concrete [...]

Case Study: A Saltbox Cottage Garden


A landscape upgrade for this salt-box style home fulfilled the clients’ desire for an outdoor entertainment space which harkened back to their New England roots. The small corner lot presented several challenges with regard to space allocation, site drainage, zoning restrictions, privacy needs and providing universal access for friends and family. A full range [...]

Case Study: Restorative Garden


In the early spring of 2012, Ariel Schrodt, a new resident of Three Crowns Park, had a vision of creating a memorial garden for his late wife, Ellen. He wanted to recreate the pond that he and his wife had built together at their previous residence. He donated several tons of Chilton Limestone boulders that he [...]

Case Study: Improving the Flow


Our clients’ home is situated in the lowest spot in the neighborhood, causing rainwater runoff to settle on their property. The front steps were failing and needed to “flow” better. The patio was old and too small for entertaining. A long retaining wall of railroad ties had deteriorated with age. An extensive home renovation [...]

Case Study: A Nantucket Style Retreat


Our clients enjoyed everything about their new home– except the back yard, which was exposed to the street, had only grass, a dull, poured concrete patio installed by the home’s contractor, consistently wet soil, and a large, unsightly catchbasin in the lawn. The wide, poured concrete driveway also looked too plain next to the [...]

Case Study: Renewed Landscape for Century-Old Manufacturer


IRMCO® Advanced Lubricant Technologies is a manufacturer of oil-free metal forming and tube bending lubricants. The company, founded in 1914 and based in Evanston since 1919, is considered an industry innovator, a steward for the environment and an exemplary neighbor in the West End Industrial District. CEO Jeff Jeffery, the great-grandson of founder William Oats Jeffery, contacted Nature's [...]