After spending a fair part of the workday on the phone or on video calls coaching small developers, it has been pretty common to find me staying up late to finish work on my own projects.
In an effort to bring more discipline to my daily work routine, my well-organized wife, Eleanor has set up the pay button on the blog (above the photo in the black menu bar) as a way for folks to buy some of my time in scheduled 20 minute blocks.
The rate is $80 per 20 minute block. If you would like to schedule a session, please email me at email@example.com to set up a time. You can attach information to your email that will help me understand your project. (There is no charge for any time I spend reviewing your background information). I typically use Google HangOuts for video call coaching session. Hangouts allows 3 or 4 people on the call and you can share computer screens. Please install Google Hangouts prior to the session and test it out. We can also use Facetime, but Facetime does not allow screen sharing and is limited to two party calls.
As an unexpected side benefit, upgrading the version of the WordPress blog platform to get the pay button feature eliminated those random advertisements that used to show up in the free version.
I think there are lots of great precedents for small single story main street buildings that work well. Above are some studies David Kim and Will Dowdy did on small, shallow storefront spaces that could be used as parking lot liners or in conjunction with small apartment buildings and cottage courts located behind the small commercial/flex building to provide mixed use without requiring the use of commercial steel pipe fire sprinklers that can be required if the residential and non-residential Occupancy Types were combined into in one mixed use building.
The intent was provide a wide/shallow space that could be flexible. We settled on a depth of 26′ as this leaves an 18′ dimension between the 8 x 8 accessible restroom and the storefront. We were also looking to keep any columns or other intermediate structure out of the floor plan and 20′-32′ of depth is readily spanned without going nuts on the truss design. You can get pre-engineered bar joists at 40′ long, but we wanted to keep the construction technique within the skills of residential trades.
Keeping the depth modest allows for daylighting of the space from a transom and light shelf over the storefront and awning. Spaces this small are easily heated and cooled with a ductless mini-split heat pump/air conditioner.
Using a single pitch roof truss, sloping from the street side to the rear, with a parapet on the street side can provide lots of room for signage, while screening compressors or kitchen hood fans from the street view.
Buildings that are flexible enough to house small and inexpensive workspace for retail, services, food and drink, etc. should be in the Small Developer’s tool box. You may know an under-utilized parking lot that could be lined with something like this. Could be good way to follow up on testing the location with some food carts.
Steve Mouzon has some very interesting thoughts along these lines. His blog has better production values than mine does, so I encourage you to click through and check it out. Steve Mouzon’s Blog Original Green